Thanks to Narendra Modi’s “operation demonetization”, while the common man was subjected to indescribable hardships, it’s an unexpected windfall for the Gods!
Ever since the 500 and 1000 rupee notes were demonetized, it was virtually raining money in the hundis of all the temples in both the Telugu States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. According to reports from various temples in the two States, the cash offerings of devotees to the deities have increased by many fold since November 9 after Modi’s action to unearth black money. This came to light when the temple authorities took up counting of hundi collections.
There is no denial of the fact that those possessing huge unaccounted money in the form of 500 and 1000 notes received a shock with the demonetisation. Since such quantity of cash would expose them, they obviously seem to have suddenly become more generous in their offerings to their deities. Thus the hundis in various temples were flooded with bundles of 500 and 1000 rupee notes. This, of course, besides the normal offerings of common people who have been putting smaller denomination notes of 100, 50, 20, 10 and even coins.
Though the banks were disbursing the new 2000 denomination notes to the people, there was suddenly an unprecedented shortage of smaller denomination currency. This further added to the agony of the already suffering common man. The shortage of “change” has put the banks in a fix as those drawing cash were insisting for smaller denomination notes. As a matter of fact, many a common man has termed the new 2000 rupee note as “useless” since it is being rejected by shopkeepers, vegetable vendors, food joints and so on, who were insisting on smaller denomination notes for supplying the daily household articles.
With the sudden shortage of smaller notes, the harassed banks looked for divine support to get over this new crisis. The RBI has appealed to all the temples to come to the rescue of the banks by helping them with smaller notes being offered in the hundis by the devotees. Accordingly, the temples swung into action by taking up weekly hundi collection counting instead of monthly counting and thus the huge deposits of bigger notes came to light in the hundis along with the smaller notes.
The famous temples in Tirumala-Tirupathi, Sri Kalahasthi, Srisailam Mallikarjuna Swamy, Kanaka Durga in Vijayawada, Kanipakam, Kanaka Mahalaskhmi temple in Visakhapatnam, Narsimhaswamy temple at Yadadri, Sri Rama temple in Bhadrachalam and scores of other temples are reported to be regularly depositing the smaller notes received in the hundis to the banks to ease the change crisis. It is stated that the temple authorities were engaging more number of people for counting the hundi collections.
However, one question that is plaguing the minds of the temple authorities as well as the devotees besides those having huge quantity of unaccounted money as to till what date the big notes from the temple hundis would be valid and accepted by the banks. According to the authorities of the Kanaka Mahalaxmi temple in Vizag, the banks had informed that the old 500 and 1000 notes would be valid and accepted only till November 24. “We hope the date would be extended as more big notes would be deposited in the hundis for some more time, a temple official observed. (NSS)