A controversy has broken out over tickets issued by the Andhra Pradesh Road Transport Corporation to travellers from Tirupati to the temple town of Tirumala. On the back of the tickets are printed government advertisements about pilgrimage to Haj and Jerusalem.
Travellers who noticed the ads on Wednesday brought it to the notice of the regional manager who said a bundle with printed material about non-Hindu pilgrimage had wrongly come to Tirupati.
The transport body's executive director for operations confirmed that this has been brought to their notice and they are probing into it.
"It is an advertisement of the government issued by the minorities department," the officer said.
Andhra Pradesh endowments minister Vellampalli Srinivas has clarified that these ticket bundles were printed during the Telugu Desam rule, before elections. And the bundles were meant for Nellore and Kadapa. How they came to Tirumala-Tirupati will now be probed.
"No propaganda is allowed in a holy place like Tirumala. We are taking a very serious view of this and will punish the guilty," the minister said.
BJP leaders who have been critical of Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy claiming that he is non-Hindu and does not believe in the religion, alleged that he is pushing his agenda for minority religions.
Controversial BJP MLA Raja Singh from Hyderabad has already put out videos raising this issue.
Earlier this week, the BJP had claimed that Mr Reddy had refused to light a lamp during an event in the US, where he is on a visit. They alleged it was because he did not respect Hindu traditions such as lighting a lamp.
Supporters of YSR Congress, the Chief Minister's party, clarified that there was no question of Jagan Reddy refusing to light a lamp as there were only electrical switches and not the traditional oil and wick lamps.
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