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Panchayat Polls: Now Tirupati Laddus join poll freebies list

 While we have seen politicians sell a/cs, fans, gas stoves and other household items along with cash as poll freebies, the latest entrant to this list is the Tirumala Laddus from Lord Balaji’s temple in Tirupati. 
 
In Chandragiri constituency, many villagers are now vying to get the free Laddu which is famous for its taste and sanctity. With YSR Congress party workers distributing free laddus as part of wooing voters to vote for the party in the Panchayat elections, this move has drawn criticism from political circles. 
 
BJP and TDP Karyakartas have come down heavily on the YSRCP for commercialising “god” and treating Laddus as the government’s own property. Not only that, but they also allege that they have destroyed the sanctity of the Lord Balaji temple of Tirumala.
 
It is important to note that Chandragiri falls under Chittoor district which is TDP National President N. Chandrababu Naidu’s home district. Unfortunately, the Laddus being distributed to voters are “Srivari Kalyanotsavam Laddus” which are rare for common people to get. But, given the mass distribution of these Laddus, it has come as a shock as to how YSRCP members procured them in bulk. 
 
On the other hand, many people, politicians and those concerned are questioning how the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) which runs the temple and its activities has allowed for such blatant misuse of the Tirupati Laddus. One wonders whether the age of “Commercialisation of God” has actually begun in Andhra Pradesh under Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy’s government. 
 

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