TTD caught again on the wrong foot; Trusts online bookstore sells literature with Islamic and Evangelical content as EO promises investigation
Telugu Book titled "Bhakti Geethaamrutha Lahari" on TTD online bookstore had versus praising Jesus Christ
It seems the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams (TTD) has a penchant for taking two wrong steps for every right one. The Andhra Pradesh governments move to provide jobs in temples to Hindus only was welcomed by all. A few weeks later the TTD seems to have shot itself in the foot after it was found out that its official online bookstore was selling Islamic and Christian literature.
The Legal Rights Protection Forum (LPRF) has brought to the notice of public about the presence of such non-Hindu and evangelical content on the online bookstore of TTD. The Telugu Book titled "Bhakti Geethaamrutha Lahari" was written by Sri Menda China Seetharamaiah and was published with the financial support of Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams in the year 2002. The said book was having Telugu Keerthanas praising Hindu Gods and Goddesses but on its page no. 182, 183, 184, it had several Keerthanas praising Jesus Christ.
LPRF says that it is most unfortunate that the PDF copy of the said book is uploaded on the official website of the TTD with Product ID: 1310. The PDF was avaliable for download at no cost. The book was available at http://ebooks.tirumala.org/Product/?ID=1310
. Though the link has been taken down now, the screenshots and Google search cache for the same are still available.
The LRPF had a complaint filed against Christian Literature on TTD Official Website. A day after the complaint was filed and due to outrage from Devotees on Social Media, and multiple phone calls to TTD Office, they removed the particular PDF from the website and now the link is not accessible. However, the relevant screenshots were taken and TTD has a lot of explanation to do as how such non-Hindu literature found its way on to their online bookstore.
The LPRF has complained to the Chief Secretary of the Government of Andhra Pradesh, Principal Secretary, to the Commissioner of the Endowments Department, JEO, Chief Vigilance Officer and Special Officer of the TTD trust.
In their complaint, the LPRF states that, "It is clear that there is a clear conspiracy to destruct the sanctity and purity of Hindu Dharma by targeting Prestigious Hindu Dharmic Institutions in various forms by some Christian Missionaries. The present matter can be treated as a part of that conspiracy. Moreover these type of incidents are not possible to be happened without internal support and cooperation by the corrupted employees/members of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams."
The complaint further states that, "This is the time to act strictly on such incidents in order to protect the sanctity and purity of Hindu Dharmic Institutions and to develop hope among Devotees in the Temple Administration."
Quranic Versus in eBook on Ramana Maharshi!
Telugu book on Ramana Maharshi on TTD website had versus from Quran and Bible
In another instance, it was found that another eBook titled 'Aarsha Jyothi' in Telugu had verses from Quran and were unrelated to the teachings of Ramana Maharshi. On its page numbers 9, 10 and 26, versus from Quran were found to be quoted out of context.
The LRPF has filed another complaint with EO TTD "against having Bible & Quranic Verses in Telugu Book titled "Aarsha Jyothi" on its Official Website, giving Uncalled Interpretations on Ramana Maharshi's Views on Non-Hindu scriptures." The official response of the EO and other officials is awaited.
LRPF informs us that when they spoke with the personal assistant to Joint Executive Officer of TTD and asked to file Police complaint for further investigation into the matter. But it seems that he has expressed his helplessness by saying that they will become scapegoats of fake SC/ST Cases. He also told LPRF that there are many employees in their department going to Churches but they remained helpless due to the fear of false atrocity cases.
EO Promises Investigation
After the furore created by the controversy, the Executive officer of TTD Anil Kumar Singhal held a press conference on Monday. He said that the authorities would launch an investigation and make sure that the content of each book is thoroughly verified before it is uploaded on the website. As soon as they came to know about the controversial content, the links to various books were disabled on the website he informed.
The EO also claimed that these books were uploaded more than a decade ago and steps will be taken to ensure that this does not repeat.
Such surreptitious and clandestine way of pushing Christian content to Hindu readers through such books is a age old strategy of the evangelists. The apologists for the Islamists seems to have taken the same path to demean Hindu scriptures and Gurus by resorting to such tactics. It has to be seen if the TTD officials responsible for the online bookstore and literature were aware of this or became partners in crime with a hidden purpose.