AICC President Rahul Gandhi on Friday entered the sacred hill shrine of Lord Venkateswara on foot.
Mr. Gandhi, who flew in at Tirupati airport this morning, drove straight to Alipiri and after offering prayers at Sri Lakshminarayana Swamy temple, started on a holy trek to the town in the company of Congress leaders and party workers.
Even though many of his family members (including his grandmother Indira Gandhi who had visited twice when she was the Prime Minister) had, in the past, visited the shrine, Mr. Gandhi is the first person from the Gandhi-clan to undertake a trek to Tirumala.
Nevertheless, the district police controlled the news of his trek as a strictly guarded secret owing to security reasons.
After offering prayers at the hill temple, Mr. Gandhi will motor down to Tirupati to take part in the ‘bus yatra’ and discuss a public meeting at Tarakarama stadium where he is supposed to comfort his commitment for the privilege of special status to the State.