In a first where a devotee approached a consumer court against a temple for the deficiency in service, a man named Bhaskar not only moved the district consumer disputes redressal commission and lodged a complaint against the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD), but received a verdict in his favour.
A consumer court in Salem has directed the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) to either facilitate a puja Bhaskar asked or pay Rs 50 lakh for making him wait for the special puja for 14 years. It asked the temple body to refund the booking amount of Rs 12,250 to Bhaskar along with interest at 24% interest per annum from 2006 till date.
The temple closed in March 2020 for 80 days following the outbreak and the conduct of all Arjitha sevas were stopped, including the “Vastralankara Seva” that Bhaskar asked for.
The TTD then sent a communique to devotee KR Hari Bhaskar asking him either to book any desired slot during the daily VIP break darshan or seek a refund. But Bhaskar asked the temple body to reschedule his Vastralankara seva date to any other date convenient to them even a year later.
The TTD administration said it would not be possible to reschedule the Seva and again asked him to seek a refund.
The consumer commission directed TTD to allot Vastralankara Seva to the devotee within a year or pay Rs 50 lakh as compensation for deficiency in service and for causing mental agony to the devotee and his family.