JUSTICE WADHWA COMMITTEE CERTIFIES AND DECLARES THAT THE JEWELS OF TTD ARE INTACT

TIRUPATI, JANUARY 21: The six-member committee led by Justice Wadhwa declared that all jewels in the treasury of Lord Venkateswara are safe and are in tact.

Coming out with a detailed 187-page report after carrying out series of verifications for a period of over an year, the committee Chairman Mr.Wadhwa speaking to media persons in Padmavathi Guest House in Tirupati on Friday asserted, “We have worked on for a year and verified the jewels of Lord. All the jewels are in order and the system to keep the track of jewels is well placed, established and maintained by temple administration of TTD. We suggested the TTD to introduce some modern technology to have a more transparent and fool proof system of protection of jewels”, he added.

One of the committee members, Justice Jagannadha Rao said “Apart from the jewels of Srivari temple at Tirumala, we have also verified the jewels of Tiruchanoor temple also. We selected the jewels in random and were surprised to see the perfect record system being maintained by the temple administration. Fortunately, the simultaneous verifications carried out by expert team of Gemmologists for diamond and other precious stone studded jewels and the verification of gold by the team from government mint also observed that the jewels of Lord safe and tact.

Former DGP Sri R.Prabhakar Rao and committee member said, “We have suggested the temple management to go for hi-fi internal security in the wake of increased terror perception across the country. The jewels are in tact as per the Tiruvabharanam register”.

Senior and renowned journalist Sri Potturi Venkateswara Rao said, “After verifying all the jewels personally, physically and technically, all of us have unanimously declared that the jewels are in tact and are safe.

Former TTD EO Sri Venkatapathi Raju said, “After thoroughly verifying the records and personally examining the jewels we have drawn the final conclusion. We have also made some recommendations to the TTD like surprise an inspection in the Sub-temples of TTD to verify the jewel registers. We have also suggested the temple management to appoint a team of archakas to inspect and verify the jewels adorned to presiding deity inside the sanctum sanctorum.

Elaborating on the verifications carried out by six-member Wadhwa Committee, the committee co-ordinator and former EO of TTD, Sri PVRK Prasad said, “No where in the country, such a brilliant system of maintenance of jewelry records is in practice. We verified 370-380 jewels for a period of over a year since the committee has been constituted. (The committee was constituted on 4th January 2010) Of these 370 plus jewels, 100 jewels are being decorated to the presiding deity of Lord Venkateswara every day, while another 70 to processional deities. We verified all the jewels at random in a phased manner and they perfectly matched the list in Tiruvabharanam register”, he added.

Adding further the senior retired IAS officer said, “To have more perfection of our verification we have thoroughly studied various books on the temple history written by Sri Veeraraghavachary, Sri Sadhu Subramanya Shastry, Dr.N.Ramesan and many other stalwarts who dedicated their lives in the service of Lord Venkateswara and in bringing sky-high reputation to the temple management. The jewelry records since the day the responsibility of the temple management has been handed over to TTD in the year 1933 from the hands of Mahants are in tact”, he added.

“However we made 22 recommendations to the TTD to have more transparency in safe guarding the antique jewels. Some of the major ones are:

>Separate treasury building with state of art security apparatus

>hi-fi museum with fool proof security mechanism to display the antique jewels

>Separate inspection teams with officers and archakas under the control of FACAO of TTD for sub-temples

>Digitalization of jewels with Radio-frequency identification (RFID), for the purpose of identification and tracking.

TTD Specified Authority chairman Sri J.Satyanarayana, TTD EO Sri IYR Krishna Rao, Joint EO Tirupati Dr. N.Yuvaraj, Chief Vigilance and Security Officer Sri MK Singh were also present.

ISSUED BY THE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER, TTD, TIRUPATI