Simhachalam Temple under PRASAD Scheme with 53 crs Grant

Simhachalam Temple under PRASAD Scheme

The Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha temple, Simhachalam is a Hindu temple situated on the Simhachalam Hill Range, which is 300 metres above the sea level in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh has been selected to be developed under the central government’s Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Augmentation Drive (PRASAD) scheme.  This will ensure a grant of Rs 53 crore from the Centre for the temple. The Centre has directed the AP Tourism Department to prepare proposals in this regard. Introduced in 2015 by the Union Ministry of Tourism, PRASAD is a Central Government scheme that focuses on identifying and developing pilgrim sites across the country to enrich the religious tourism experience.
Simhachalam is the second-largest temple, after Tirumala in Andhra Pradesh, in terms of income earned. It is dedicated to Vishnu, who is worshipped there as Varaha Narasimha. As per the temple’s legend, Vishnu manifested in this form (lion’s head and human body) after saving his devotee Prahlada from a murder attempt by the latter’s father Hiranyakashipu. Except on Akshaya Tritiya, the idol of Varaha Narasimha is covered with sandalwood paste throughout the year, which makes it resemble a Linga. Simhachalam temple resembles a fortress from outside with three outer courtyards and five gateways. The architecture is a mixture of the styles of the Kalinga Architecture/ Odishan (Orissan), Chalukyas, and the Cholas. 
Sanchaita Gajapatiraju, Simhachalam temple chairperson said “On behalf of all the devotees, I would like to place on record my deepest gratitude to Prahlad Patel Ji for selecting this 11th-century temple in Visakhapatnam under the PRASAD Scheme. Together we will take it to greater heights.
Amaravati, Srisailam, Simhachalam, Tirumala and Kanak Durga were earlier notified under PRASAD scheme. However, the implementation is subject to the condition that it is approved only after the ongoing project is successfully executed with all formalities. AP Tourism Minister M Srinivas Rao said he had submitted a report to the Central Government regarding the development of temples in North Andhra. He had asked the Union Tourism Minister to set up a temple tourism circuit in Uttaranchal. He said the full proposals would be submitted to the Central Government soon.

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