Legal Correspondent

Stops drinking water funding to Chittoor

Writ filed objecting to non-religious use of TTD funds

Court stays G.O. relating to 50 p.c. usage of funds

Hyderabad: Justice L. Narasimha Reddy of the A.P. High Court on Tuesday restrained the authorities from diverting funds from Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) for supply of drinking water to Chittoor and other villages.

The Judge was passing these orders while admitting a writ petition filed by T. S. Rao, former Director General of Police, Andhra Pradesh, Rayasam Venkataramiah, former Chief Commissioner of Income-tax, Ms. Sandhyavanadam Lakshmi Devi, Somaraju Suseela, Manohar Rao and S. Lakshmanacharya.

Government’s directive

They complained that the funds from the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams are being diverted at the behest of the government for non-religious purposes.

D.V. Seetha Rama Murthy, Counsel for the petitioners said that Section 11 of the Endowments Act lists out the purposes for which TTD funds can be utilised.

Justice Reddy wondered how this project of taking water to Chittoor is for the benefit of the pilgrims.

He felt that there is prima facie case and stayed the part of the G.O. 687 which mandates the Tirumal Tirupati Devasthanams to release 50 per cent the funds for this project.