Jobless tribal youths turn priests
First Published : 03 Nov 2009 03:43:00 AM IST
Last Updated :
BHADRACHALAM: Almost 60 temples in Bhadrachalam division of Khammam district are all set to have archakas to conduct the daily poojas, which these temples have missed over the last many years, for lack of archakas.It is estimated that more than 80 temples, some even as old as 100 years and above have been lying unattended, thanks to lack of priests to look after and conduct the daily poojas.Looking at this, an NGO organization, Seva Bharathi, decided to revive these old temples and give them back their glory. They set out to find interested priests, who would work in these remote villages, some deep inside the forest adjacent to villages.But, they could not find even one willing to go to these villages and work. Subsequently, they hit upon an idea, following which they decided to pick up unemployed tribal youths from the villages close to these temples and teach them the rituals of worshipping the deities.The only condition needed was that these youth need to have been educated at least upto 5th standard in Telugu medium and be able to read a newspaper.Though the NGOs members set out quite apprehensively, doubtful of finding somebody interested, they could zero in on almost 40 such youths from many of these villages, who showed interest.Subsequently, all these people were sent to the vedic school for training at Tirupati in the Sweta Bhavan which is run by the TTD. All these 40 students, all tribals from Bhadrachalam, Kunavaram, VR Puram and Chintur mandals of Khammam district, learnt reading slokas, Yoga, Kesanamathi (a ritualistic procedure) besides pooja methods being followed in Tirumala and Bhadrachalam temples.