Srivari Mettu at Tirumala Hills
(Shorter, Arduous path to Tirumala)
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) management has seriously been contemplating on the proposal of early closure of Srivari Mettu footpath leading to the sacred town of Tirumala from Chandragiri town.
The Srivari mettu foot way is located at a village called Srinivasa mangapuram , which is at a distance of 15 kms from Tirupati. The footpath spanning 2.1 km, is the shortest to reach Tirumala hills, compared to the regular and popular route starting from Alipiri. though, is a short cut to Tirumala, devotees by and large use only the conventional Alipiri footpath.
The Srivari Mettu footpath, which has not only been short in distance but also less strenuous compared to Alipiri footpath from Tirupati, of late has become a much preferred trekking route if the swelling number of devotees is any indication.
The primeval towpath, which earlier served as the most ideal mode of travel both for the devotees as well as the local residents, lost its sheen as it passes through dense Tirumala forest – a domicile of wild animals.
However, with the temple administration focussing on the forlorn footpath, things took a drastic turn during the past one decade and several facilities sprang up on the primordial route including setting-up of a security outpost and issuance of Divya darshanam tickets.
At present, devotees are allowed to trek along the footpath between 6.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. in the evening. The route remains strictly closed at night.
But the Monday’s incident wherein a young boy was left injured in a leopard attack has nevertheless forced the temple administration to think on the lines of permitting the devotees to trek on the route only between 6.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.
Sources said that the advancement of trekking time by one hour is being mooted to ensure the safety of the devotees.