Adipurush: Chilkur Balaji temple priest wades into Kriti Sanon, Om Raut ‘hug and kiss’ controversy

Even as the ‘hug and kiss’ episode involving Adipurush heroine Kriti Sanon and director Om Raut, raged on, Chilkur temple chief priest too waded into the controversy


HYDERABAD: Even as the ‘hug and kiss’ episode involving Adipurush heroine Kriti Sanon and director Om Raut in Tirumala, raged like a wildfire, Chilkur Balaji temple chief priest Rangarajan too waded into the controversy on Thursday by describing the incident as a condemnable act.

A video of Om Raut, giving a peck and a hug to the Bollywood actress right outside the Tirumala temple and while seeing her off on Wednesday, became viral on social media platforms even as it attracted widespread criticism from the devout. It assumed significance particularly in the wake of Kriti Sanon essaying the role of goddess Sita in the movie alongside Bahubali actor Prabhas, who portrayed Lord Sri Rama.

Reacting to the controversy, Chilkur Balaji temple chief priest Rangarajan, in a video message, called it a condemnable act. He said that the heroine was wearing the red-coloured ‘Sesha Vastram’ offered by the Tirumala priests inside the temple when Om Raut hugged her and kissed her.

He pointed out that such an open display of love and affection was inappropriate on the seven hills. He further added that even married couples resisted any such temptations when they attended Kalyanam and were on the premises of Lord Sri Venkateswara temple.

He opined that the heroine, who had played the role of Goddess Sita – considered a symbol of purity and sacrifice – should not have been involved in such an act. “We revered NTR when he played the roles of Rama or Krishna because he behaved very well and never indulged in activities that would deride the characters that he portrayed,” he said.

Rangarajan said that even Deepika Chikilia, who played Sita in Ramanand Sagar’s Ramayan TV serial, was respected and revered all over the country. Rangarajan urged the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) to take serious note and curb such incidents from repeating on the precincts of the temple.

The brief video of Om Raut’s peck to Kriti Sanon near the shrine went viral on social media. They both had a special VIP darshan and prayed for the success of the movie. Many bystanders and devotees observed this. Objections poured in from different walks of life including the scholars of Agama Sastra and the AP State BJP’s Tirupati unit.

However, certain sections of the social media followers felt that the ‘kissing issue’ had been exaggerated and blown out of proportions. They were of the opinion that Om Raut only seemed to have hugged the heroine out of affection and the so-called kiss was only a peck on the cheek, again a sign of respect than anything else. Some even rubbished the controversy as a publicity stunt for media attention.

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