Tirupati: The hill shrine of Tirumala is witnessing a piquant situation where the devotee rush has drastically decreased but the hundi collections have steeply increased, which is believed to be the after affects of demonetisation of currency.
Lord Venkateswara temple in Tirumala which witnesses heavy rush during auspicious Karthika Masam, (where Ayyappa devotees also in large numbers visit Tirumala after completing Sabarimala yatra) has came down for the past one week after the announcement of ban on big currency by the Centre.
Devotees who came to Tirumala last week faced lot of hardships due to shortage of money, and many have postponed their pilgrimage. Before the banning of big currency, the hundi collection rarely crossed Rs two crores per day. But, amazingly the hundi collections of Lord Venkateswara in Tirumala has almost doubled in the past four days.
The hundi collection on Wednesday was Rs 2.84 crore and about 40,000 pilgrims had darshan. On Tuesday the hundi collection crossed Rs 3.31 crore. On Tuesday 57,025 devotees had darshan of Lord, which is very low compared to previous week.
On November 14 about 68,000 devotees had darshan and the hundi collection was Rs 3 crores. 80,985 devotees had darshan on November 13 and the hundi collection was Rs 2.95 crore.
According to TTD officials, despite the pilgrim rush decreasing due to demonetisation, the hundi collections are increasing day by day as banned currency of Rs 500, Rs 1,000 rupee notes in large numbers are being found during the counting of hundi collections.
TTD does not restrict any devotee in dropping whatever he wishes to give to the deity as Kanuka. Some unknown devotees drop bundles of currency including foreign currency in the hundi, said one of the officials.