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Tuesday, June 3, 2008


Film star Shreya Sharan of 'Shivaji' fame had a harrowing experience at the temple town of Tirumala on Ugadi when a fan tried to 'molest' her in the presence of a handful of pilgrims.

The actress, who attended the 'Suprabhata seva' darshan at around 2.30 am and came out of the temple at 3.45 am, was taken aback when a person came out of nowhere and tried to shake her hand. When she rejected his 'advances', the overenthusiastic fan moved closer to her. An exasperated Shreya slapped him hard, while her attendant Koti, who was escorting her, scared him away.

The person in question, Hari, a cleaner at Shankara mutt in Tirumala, however managed to flee the scene. The actress however did not file any complaint against Hari. It is learnt that Hari has fled from the mutt also.

The actress arrived here on Sunday with local MLA M Venkataramana arranging a darshan for her and giving the attendant Koti to escort her. An official of TTD told 'TOI' that incidents of this kind are highly reprehensible. "These types of attacks have become common whenever celebrities visit the temple and it is high time the TTD took steps to control these incidents", he said on condition of anonymity.

Sources said since it was very early in the morning there were very few pilgrims during the Suprabhata darshan. "Regaining her composure, the actress waved at the pilgrims and moved on", a TTD source said.

Blaming the fiasco to the inept handling by the TTD officials,Krishnamacharyulu, a pilgrim from East Godavari district, said: "Whenevercelebrities arrive, it is the TTD officials and police who create unnecessary hungama. If the officials can't control themselves during the visits of celebrities, how can we expect crazy fans to maintain calm", he asked.

Expressing concern over the Shreya episode, another TTD official said incidents of this nature does not bode well for the image of a major pilgrim centre like Tirumala. It may be recalled that Bollywood actresses Aishwarya Rai and Yukta Mukhey were surrounded by a mob of fans when they visited Tirumala last year.

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