TIRUMALA: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has turned down the request of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) to accept scrapped currency notes dropped in the temple hundi, or donation box, after December 30 last year, the deadline for exchanging demonetised notes. Caught in a fix, the TTD has asked devotees not to put any more demonetised notes in the hundi. “We had written to RBI asking them to accept the old notes that were put in the hundi after December 30, but the apex bank declined our request,” TTD executive officer D Sambasiva Rao said on Thursday.

Sources said RBI’s Hyderabad branch, catering to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, has completely stopped accepting old notes.

Half of TTD’s Rs 8.4 crore hundicollection was donated before December 30, 2016. TTD’s annual hundi income is nearly Rs 1,100 crore. According to TTD rules, money put in the hundi cannot be destroyed.

TTD is Andhra Pradesh’s biggest tourist attraction. Almost 60% of the 158.5 million domestic tourists visit TTD, said officials. Though RBI’s rejection of TTD’s request would not impact its hundi revenue, the shredding of old currency will remain a concern for TTD

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