Hyderabad: Priests and temple staff called off their three-day-old strike after the government agreed to increase their salaries. The government will hike the grant to each temple from Rs 2,500 per month to Rs 6,000, of which Rs 4,500 would be paid to priests and Rs 1,500 to conduct basic rituals.
Endowments minister A. Indrakaran Reddy briefed Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao about the priests’ demands, following which he agreed to an immediate increase in the salaries. Mr Rao also agreed to give a special Telangana increment to priests.
He sought time to implement another major demand: Payment of salaries through the treasury on par with government staff. A committee would submit a report on the subject in a month, and a decision would be taken. Mr G. Bhanumurthy, leader of the priests joint action committee, said he was confident the CM would approve paying salaries from the treasury after the committee submits its report....