One of India's holiest pilgrimage centre is lately engulfed in a controversy of rampant prostitution. Unofficial sources reveal that Tirumala-Tirupati hills is home to more than 200 commercial sex workers leading to a rise in AIDS cases in the area.
SPECIAL VIP ’darshan’, discrimination against the Scheduled Castes and now AIDS scare. The Tirupati Tirumala Devasthanam has been engulfed in controversies lately, with the latest being the accusations of Tirupati- India’s holiest Hindu pilgrimage centre being home to sex workers. According to Andhra Pradesh
Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Control Society, the Tirumala-Tirupathi hills is home to more than 200 commercial sex workers.
"We have come across this information through unofficial sources that there is commercial sex activity even in Tirumala. There are about 200-300 sex workers there," Project Director, AP-AIDS Control Society, K Chandravadan said.
A steep rise in the number of HIV/AIDS cases has been recorded in the Tirupati-Tirumala hills. The discovery also reveal that sex workers clandestinely operate in about 15 secluded spots in the hills.
Completely denying this revelation, Executive Officer, Tirupati Tirumala Devasthanam, KV Ramanachary said, "I disagree with the media reports. There are thousands of employees here who are sincere and dedicated. There is no scope for such scandals. We would never allow it."
Chittoor, known for its pilgrimage sites has been identified as a high-risk zone.
The temple authorities are denying such reports and have gone into damage control mode but the news of rampant prostitution in the vicinity of the temple has shocked the devotees.