Red alert at Tirumala temple

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Tirumala, July 25 (UNI) In the wake of the serial bomb blasts in Bangalore, a red alert was sounded and security stepped up in the pilgrim-choked temple towns of Tirumala and Tirupati today, including world famous Venkateswara temple, to prevent any untoward incident.

Shortly after the news about the blasts in Bangalore spread, police swung into action and tightened the security. Vehicles entering and leaving Tirupati and Tirumala were brought under close scrutiny and surveillance stepped-up in the border areas, according to TTD vigilance and security officials.

Security sleuths, including bomb disposal squad with a sniffer dog, checked sensitive areas like railway station, airport, RTC central bus station, TTD's Srinivasam choultry complex, free choultries and private lodges, a police official said.

Security was also tightened at Alipiri and the queue complex at Tirumala where everyday there is a congregation of at least 50,000 pilgrims.

The number of round-the-clock armed guards were deployed at the entrance to the main temple of Venkateswara was increased and gun-toting sharp-shooters deployed on roof-tops around the temple, especially sensitive places.

The policemen closely monitored the movement of the pilgrims at all vulnerable points. Besides the Tirumala temple, the other temples in and around Tirupati also were kept under a close watch, the official added.

UNI KNR VV RP AS1644

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