TIRUPATI: A travel agent was held at Tirumala on Wednesday when he tried to enter the Venkateswara Temple with 188 fake darshan tickets along with a huge number of pilgrims from Maharashtra.
Surprisingly, he showed fake Rs 300 Seeghra Darshan tickets in Mumbai and brought a group of 192 pilgrims from Maharashtra.
TTD chief vigilance and security officer (CVSO) Ake Ravikrishna said that the travel agent Prashanth Dayanand Bhagat visited Tirumala for the third consecutive year with a huge group of pilgrims from Maharashtra. In the afternoon, he reached the Seeghra Darshan counter and submitted Rs 300 tickets. The first four tickets were scanned properly and matched, but the remaining were rejected during scanning.
The staff manning the counter immediately informed matter to the higher authorities. Soon, the CVSO and AVSOs rushed to the spot and checked all the tickets. The quick response Code (QR code) did not match on the tickets. The security sleuths found all the tickets to be counterfeit. The first four darshan tickets were booked online. “Based on his confidence, we suspect that Bhagat had done the same thing during his previous visits to Tirumala. A thorough investigation into the matter is on,” said CVSO Ravikrishna.