The visit of a group of Christian nuns to Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple in Srirangam on Tuesday evening caused a flutter on social media.
The visit raised a furore after allegations were made on a social networking site that the nuns in their religious attire started to pray taking out their rosaries while inside the temple .
Photographs showing a group of nuns standing and walking near Thousand Pillar Mandapam were also widely circulated on online messaging platforms.
Officials of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department said the nuns had come from Kerala as tourists and were indeed in their religious attire, but did not pray with rosaries inside the temple.
The nuns were near the Thousand Pillar Mandapam at the outer prakaram when it was brought to the notice of the temple authorities by some devotees. Temple officials said the nuns were politely asked to leave the premises as they were in their religious attire. The nuns left the temple immediately, an official said. Although people of other faiths, including foreign nationals, were permitted inside the temple, they were not allowed beyond the Aryapadaal entrance. Visitors of other faiths were not allowed inside any of the Sannidhis as well, the temple authorities explained.