Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao’s Rs 5 cr gift to Lord Venkateswara at Tirupati should have come from his pocket, not public’s

By: |
Published: February 27, 2017 4:46:40 AM

No thanksgiving in recent history could possibly match Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s (KCR’s) splurge—gold ornaments worth R5 crore, given to Lord Venkateshwara at Tirupati.

K Chandrasekhar Rao, Telangana chief minister, gold ornaments, Lord Venkateshwara, Andhra Pradesh, Endowments Department, Common Good FundNo thanksgiving in recent history could possibly match Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s (KCR’s) splurge—gold ornaments worth R5 crore, given to Lord Venkateshwara at Tirupati. (Source: PTI)

No thanksgiving in recent history could possibly match Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s (KCR’s) splurge—gold ornaments worth R5 crore, given to Lord Venkateshwara at Tirupati. KCR had pledged the rather generous gift at the height of the movement he spearheaded for the creation of Telangana. What is interesting here—other than, of course, the wrenching irony that the god’s earthly abode continues to be a part of Andhra Pradesh—is the fact that the R5 crore came from taxpayers’ money.

It came from the Common Good Fund of the state’s Endowments Department, created to restore dilapidated temples. So, in effect, Telangana temples needing repair gave the gift to arguably the richest temple in India, in a year the state is reeling under drought.

Apart from the fact that KCR had no business using public money to redeem a pledge he made to the divine in his personal capacity—he could have well used his own resources, considering as per disclosures made for the 2014 assembly elections in Telangana, he had movable and immovable assets of over R15 crore—the CM’s act raises questions about the separation of the church (read religion) and the state.

You might also want to see this:

To be sure, managing temples and other places of worship and financing their restoration, especially if they are of historical value, can be a legitimate function of the state. But why should public money be spent on the chief minister propitiating a deity?

Follow financialexpress.com for all news and analysis on the Lok Sabha Elections 2019. Check Lok Sabha election 2019 schedule, Lok Sabha Constituency Details and updates on campaigning by Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter.

Switch to Hindi Edition