Priority will be given to the provision of pilgrim amenities, says Minister
Tourism Minister Muttamsetti Srinivasa Rao has said that top priority will be given to the provision of pilgrim amenities at the temple of Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy at Simhachalam. He expressed happiness at the sanctioning of ₹55 crore by the Centre under its ‘PRASAD’ scheme.
Thanking Union Minister of Tourism G. Kishen Reddy for responding to his letter on promotion of temple tourism in the State, Mr. Srinivasa Rao gave details of the development works to be taken up at Simhachalam like revival of the ancient footpath from Madhavadhara to the Simhachalam hill and construction of bathing ghats, provision of changing rooms and lighting at the temple ‘pushkarini’, at a media conference at his camp office at Seethammadhara here on Friday,
He said that though proposals were sent in the past, they were kept pending due to the pandemic situation. The proposals were sent for ₹70 crore and ₹55 crore was sanctioned. The plan for construction of an underpass, made in the past, was given up on the advice of China Jeeyar Swamy. A ‘yagnasala’ would be constructed at the temple. Queue complexes would be constructed on the lines of Tirumala as there would be a huge turnout of devotees during Ekadasi, Chandanotsavam and other auspicious days.
The Minister said that a 2,000-capacity waiting hall would be constructed on the lines of the one at Tirumala both on the hill top and at the foothill for the convenience of devotees. A walking track would be developed all around the Simhachalam hill range to enable devotees to circumambulate during Guru Purnima (Giri Pradakshina) on the lines of the one at Arunachalam in Tamil Nadu.
Mr. Srinivasa Rao said that proposals have also been sent to the Centre for development of Srisailam, Vijayawada Kanaka Durga temple, Annavaram and the Sun temple at Arasavalli under the ‘PRASAD’ scheme.
Under Secretary (Tourism) S.S. Varma said that plans would be made for the development works after studying the proposals submitted by the State government.
Executive Director of AP Tourism A.L. Mal Reddy, Simhachalam Executive Officer M.V. Suryakala, Appanna Dharmakarthala Mandali special invitee Gantla Srinu Babu, Tourism CEO Murthy, Regional Director K. Ramana and Divisional Manager Prasada Reddy were among those who participated.
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