Vijay Mallya, who has been in the news of late due to his Kingfisher Airlines facing an acute financial crisis, marked his 57th birthday by donating 3 kg gold at the Tirupati temple in Andhra Pradesh.
He offered worship to Lord Venkateswara and asked the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD) to use the gold for gilding the Bangaru Vakili (doors leading to the temple's sanctum sanctorum).
According to TTD Deputy Executive Officer Chinnamgari Ramana, Mallya himself handed over the gold bricks weighing nearly 3 kg to temple officials today. He was given a receipt for the donation.
Earlier this year, Mallya made an offering of gold at another famous temple. In Aug, he donated gold-plated doors to the Kukke Subramanya temple in Karnataka.
The UB Group chief is apparently trying to appease the Gods so that the crisis plaguing his pet aviation venture can be resolved. Kingfisher's aircrafts were grounded on Oct 1 after the pilots and engineers boycotted work.
As they had not received their salaries for months, the staff who went on strike rejected the management's plea for more time to pay the dues. The airline's flying licence was subsequently suspended.
Incidentally, Mallya is said to have ordered that each and every one of his aircraft be first flown in a circle around the Tirupati temple before it joined the fleet.
Today, Mallya addressed all his followers on a microblogging site by tweeting: "I am overwhelmed n humbled by ur birthday greetings n good wishes.Thank u from d bottom of my heart.Am in Tirupati.May Balaji bless us all."