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In historic move, Dalits will be trained in Tirupati to become priests

Tirupati: In a historic change to age-old tradition, the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) has decided to train Dalits and other backward communities to conduct religious ceremonies in temples.A pilot project to educate 200 people from
India TV News Desk September 24, 2015 15:47 IST
India TV News Desk

Tirupati: In a historic change to age-old tradition, the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) has decided to train Dalits and other backward communities to conduct religious ceremonies in temples.

A pilot project to educate 200 people from these communities for a period of three months will be launched soon.

This is the first time that members of these communities will be offered a certificate for a course in Vedic traditions at the world's richest temple.

Recently the TTD had arranged for an informal session to teach Adivasi priests about Vedic traditions.

The TTD also carried out an initiative along these lines called Dalit Govindam for a week.

As part of this program, Dalit youth were taught how to offer prasad and also a couple of other rituals to make them familiar with these traditions.
 
But this time, the education will be more formal and a certificate will be handed out at the end. TTD will arrange for this certificate program from Shri Venkateswara Vedic University. The trainees will initially be selected from the Chittoor and West Godavari districts.

P Manikyala Rao, the Andhra Pradesh Endowments Minister, said that more attention would be given to people living in backward areas.

"The endowments department, in association with the TTD, will also build temples in far-flung villages. Once the training session is over, these youths will be handed over the task of daily rituals in those proposed temples," he added.