ANNADANAM IS THE SUPREME OF ALL CHARITIES (SPECIAL STORY)-TTD’S ANNADANAM COMPLEX IS BIGGEST IN SOUTH-EAST ASIA
Annadanam Samam Danam Trilokeshu Na Vidhathe
-These are the verses from the Vedas, meaning Annadanam is supreme and incomparable to any charity. Hence giving food to the devotees is more than attaining heaven. The temple management of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams(TTD) has taken up this noble task of serving the hungry providing free food in the name of “Annadanam” since several decades.
Gaja turaga Sahasram Gokulam koti danam
Kanaka Rajatha patram Methini sagarantham
Upaya kula vishuttam Koti kanya pradanam
Nahi nahi bahu danam Annadanam samanam
Nothing in this world is equivalent to providing free foot to the hungry and needy. Nor even donating 1000 elephants & horses, donating 10 million cows, donating any number of vessels of silver and gold, donating the entire land till sea, offering the entire services of the clan, helping in the marriage of 10 million women, never equals to Annadanam.
With its prime motto-“Manava Sevaye Madhava Seva”, the temple management of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams is marching ahead in Annadanam from the past 25 years. TTD began this service on 6th April 1985 feeding just 2000 pilgrims. But today there are as many as 35-45thousand pilgrims taking free meals every day in the massive Annadanam complex at Tirumala. This Annadanam complex has been feeding pilgrims coming from across the country for over 12 hours on any given day.
Along with the day by day increase in the pilgrim influx to the holy hill shrine, the number of pilgrims consuming free meals has also considerably increased year by year which is clearly indicated in the chart given below.
2007-08 : 1,15,86,040
2008-09 : 1,24,19,929
2009-10 : 1,29,54,169
2010-11(till March) : 1,34,98,345
The above statistics clearly shows that there is a steep increase in the number of pilgrims taking meals at Annadanam year after year. Keeping in view the ever increasing pilgrim influx to Tirumala, the temple administration has set to construct a new massive Annadanam complex, which could feed almost double the number of pilgrims than the existing one. While the present building has the capacity to feed almost 2000 pilgrims in one sitting, the new complex which is in offing provides food to nearly 4000 pilgrims at a time.
Coming up in a spacious area of 97,000 odd square feet, the new Annadanam building consists of four massive halls, each which a capacity of over 950 seats. Apart from providing the ordinary meals, TTD has also purchased rothi making machine, which prepares 2000 rothis in an hour.
TTD EO INSPECTS THE ONGOING WORKS AT THE NEW ANNADANAM COMPLEX:
The TTD EO on Friday inspected the ongoing works in the New Annadanam Complex area at Tirumala.
Later addressing the media persons, he said, the entire work of new complex will be completed by the end of May and will be inaugurated by President of India, Smt.Pratibha Patil likely on July 7 this year. “We will start the rothi feeding in the next 10-15days on trial basis”, he added.
The EO said, a centralised luggage delivery counter is also coming up opposite the new Annadanam Complex.
Annadanam overall supervising in-charge and special grade deputy EO Reception Sri Lakshmikantham, SE II Sri Ramesh Reddy, Annadanam Deputy EO Sri Gajapathi, Catering Officer Sri Sastry and other officials were also present.
ISSUED BY TTDs PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER, TIRUPATI