TTD automates baggage management system for devotees, says EO Dharma Reddy

Devotees visiting Tirumala can deposit and retrieve their luggage, including mobile phones, in a hassle-free manner

TTD automates baggage management system for devotees, says EO Dharma Reddy

TIRUMALA: Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) has automated the Balaji Baggage Management System (BBMS) for the convenience of the devotees thronging the hill shrine. As per the new initiative, devotees can deposit and retrieve their luggage, including mobile phones, in a hassle-free manner.

Speaking to media at Annamayya Bhavan here on Tuesday, TTD executive officer (EO) AV Dharma Reddy said, “A section of devotees are trying to take their mobile phones along with them into the sanctum sanctorum, assuming that depositing the mobile phones will delay their retrieval. In the newly introduced system, luggage, mobile phones and other electronic items can be easily retrieved by the devotees without waiting for long if deposited.”

Explaining the salient features of the BBMS, Dharma Reddy said that after the devotees reach the baggage counter, the darshan ticket would be scanned and their details would automatically be stored on the electronic device. Devotees who didn’t possess a darshan ticket would be given an automatically generated QR code receipt by entering their details and name and attaching the RFID embedded tag to the bag through a type clip. Similarly, during mobile deposit, darshan ticket, Aadhaar and details of devotees would be collected, he added.

The TTD EO said that after gathering the details of the devotees, the staff at baggage counters would keep devotees’ mobile phones safely in a pouch and link them to a QR code and issue a receipt to them. “Due to the installation of GPS in the luggage vehicles, the devotees will receive the arrival time of their luggage in the form of a message. Similarly, if the receipts are scanned through the display kiosks outside the luggage counter, they will be informed whether the luggage has arrived or not,” Dharma Reddy said.

Dharma Reddy said that once the luggage reached the luggage return centers by vehicle, it would be sent to the counters with the help of a trolley with a colour coding system. He said that by scanning the receipts of the devotees through an electronic device, the number of their mobile and the self-rack where the luggage was kept would be known, so that the luggage could be easily retrieved. Since a month ago, the new system was introduced on a trial basis and around 60,000 mobile phones and over 40,000 bags are being deposited and delivered every day, he said.

The TTD EO said that the new system was being followed in 16 centres by establishing 44 deposit counters near Rs 300 darshan ticket entry, Divya Darshanam, Sarvadarshanam, Supatham, Srivari Mettu and Alipiri walkway points. Similarly, 20 counters were also established at common luggage centres, six counters at GNC and two luggage return centres at TBC, the TTD EO added.

TTD chief vigilance and security officer (CVSO) Narasimha Kishore said that Bengaluru-based donor Venugopal donated around Rs 1 crore for software, while Vedantam Somasekhar, CEO of Track It, Hyderabad donated Rs 17 lakh, and Chennai-based Charles Martin donated Rs 2 crore for hardware. Arrangements were being made for the deposit and delivery of luggage and mobile phones in one place, he said.

Later, Dharma Reddy along with Narasimha Kishore visited the deposit counter at GNC tollgate. An information centre was established for the convenience of the devotees, where they could get their doubts clarified about the new system, Dharma Reddy said.

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