Shirdi Saibaba temple earned Rs 1,441 crore in last 5 years
A recent audit has shown that Shirdi's Saibaba temple has earned Rs 1,441 crore in the last five years.
Saibaba Sansthan trust has recorded Rs 1,441 crore income in the last five years, with 22 per cent higher donations received every year, executive officer Kishor More said today.
The trust has spent Rs 828 crore on various beneficial work for devotees, including Rs 160 crore on hospital, 'prasadalaya' and funds allotted in the form of donations to various charity trusts, More said, quoting the figures recorded after the Sansthan's audit conducted recently by a government-recognised agency.
Five years back, about 20,000 devotees used to visit the Saibaba's shrine daily, but presently figures show that around 60,000 people come to visit the temple everyday and the number goes up to about one lakh on weekends.
During special festivals at least two to three lakh devotees visit the famous shrine, More said, adding that the daily income now was around Rs 45 lakh, as compared to Rs 20 lakh per day five years back.
The trust has contributed funds on building super-speciality hospital, Shirdi's roads, water arrangements, various developmental works including Chief Minister's Relief fund and Shirdi's airport, he said.
The audited report of the Sansthan will be tabled in the state Assembly during the winter session for grant, he said.
When asked about 'hidden donations' in boxes like gold ornaments, cash and foreign currency, More said the trust does not have a separate machinery to check such things because when devotees come to seek blessings of Saibaba they donate money, but from where they get it is difficult to know.
Instead of counting donated money once in a week as it was done five years back, now it is being counted two times a week and an officer from charity commissioner's office and Sansthan's officials remain present at the time of opening and closing of donation boxes. A video recording is also done.