Chennai: A Naga sadhu, accompanied by three semi-clad followers, visited the Lord Venkateswara temple at the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) Information Centre at T Nagar and created a huge flutter.
After the visit of the Babas to the temple on Friday, the administration closed the shrine in the morning hours of Saturday to perform the “suddhi”, or cleansing ceremony.
A large number of devotees who turned up at the temple on Saturday morning for darshan were disappointed to see the temple doors closed and they had to wait till noon.
More than the visit of the “Naga sadhus” or “Aghori” sadhus, the closure of the temple from 5 am to 11.55 am had led to the raising of eyebrows. The TTD did not go into much detail while displaying a notice stating the “temple is closed on Saturday from 5 am to 11.55 am due to some religious reason. Darshan will start at 12 noon.”
When contacted, a senior member of the local advisory committee said two committee members had “brought” four Aghori sadhus — one of them was fully naked, smeared with holy ash and had lengthy matted hair while three others were semi-clad - for darshan of Lord Venkateswara and Goddess Padmavathy on Friday morning.
Much before the priests realised what was happening, the sadhus offered flowers, had darshan and left the temple.
“Since the Aghori sadhus had entered the temple, the priests had to perform ‘suddhi’ this morning before allowing the devotees for darshan,” he said. Sources said the priests performed Samprokshanam (meant to purify the place).
The incident of the sadhus visiting the temple was doing the rounds on Whatsapp on Saturday. Advocate Vasan claimed that he encountered the Naga Babas at Poonamallee on Friday morning and took their “blessings.”
“When I learnt they were on a pilgrimage to Tamil Nadu, I suggested they visit the TTD temple and brought them here”, Mr. Vasan said. “They are not Aghori sadhus but are Naga sadhus. Mehent Raman Giri Naga Baba, from Varanasi, accompanied by his seven disciples, came in two jeeps, offered flowers, had darshan, and thereafter left the temple,” he said....