A massive fire broke out in the famous Tirumala Tirupati Venkateswara temple in the early hours on Friday creating panic among the thousands of devotees. The fire started about 5 a.m at the boondi pottu- the kitchen where ingredients for the famous Tirupati laddu sweet are prepared.
Cooks rushed out as flames burst out of the pottu. The fire spread quickly as large quantities of ghee stored in the kitchen caught fire. The area was engulfed in smoke creating panic among hundreds of devotees who were at the temple complex waiting for darshan. However, no casualties were reported.
Three fire tenders reached the spot immediately and doused the flames.
Tirumala Tirupati Devastanam Trust executive officer Sambasiva Rao, and along with other officials took stock of the situation.
“The total loss is estimated to be around Rs 20 lakh. The mishap seems to have occurred due to overheat,” Rao said.
The Laddu pottus, where hundreds of thousands of famed Tirupati laddus are prepared every day, are located on the north side of the sanctum sanctorum within the temple complex. Laddu preparation was temporarily stopped following the incident.