The Seshachalam hill ranges spread over an area of 4,755 square Kilometres in southern Andhra Pradesh is known for rich bio-diversity and region also is a domicile for hundreds of natural springs and waterfalls. It is a green oasis for nature enthusiasts to spend and explore with the permission of Forest department.
As usual this Sunday( 11.7.2021 ), We took permission to trek on “ Annamayya Baata “, the route once taken by the saint-poet Tallapaka Annamacharya from his village Tallapaka to the abode of Lord Venkateswara.
We have trekked a part of this route from Tirumala side which covers hilly terrain of 15 KM to Kukkaladoddi on kadapa-Renigunta road. Forest officials who accompanied us told that there are seven theerthams enroute . We reached one of these – Markendaya theertham which is located amidst huge rocks and had a pleasant swimming. Enroute we found dilapidated choultry meant for Enroute pilgrims for resting. It was constructed by the then kings for resting purpose.
Interestingly, we found a tank which was meant for pilgrims. Those who wish to Tirumala via Kadapa, used to opt for Swami Padala Trova which is on the” Balapalle- Mamandur “ road. Of late, this route is getting prominence as “ Annamayya Route” This is gateway to enter the domain of the Lord from “ Devuni Gadapa”. Mr. Bhuman, along with nature enthusiasts felt the need to make the route officially accessible by foot to devotees from Kadapa and beyond. Had an opportunity to see the sand wood plantation of TTD in around one hundred hectares for last six years and gardens were fenced to protect damages of plants by wild elephants. TTD is purchasing sandlewood from Karnataka for temple utility and they want to be self reliant on this wood mainly used weekly Abhisekham of Lord, according forest officials. Asian elephants are said to roaming in the region but we couldn’t found. (Ramachandra Reddy Palavali , Former Bureau In charge, Deccan Chronicle and currently working as General Manager, Sricity (P) Ltd, Tirupati. email- ramachandra.palavali @gmail.com)