It was during 1783-84 ,  a time when the atrocities of the  foreigners  were unbearable .


Their  hatred for idol worship made the locals  tremble, not in fear for their lives,

but in fear of the possible damages that the age old  holy idols in their ancient temples would suffer. Drastic measures were made to save the deities  from disrespect.  However the demons used to destroy them and if that was not possible, deface them. The smaller utsavar idols made of the expensive Panchaloha were carried off in large heaps to Delhi, to be melted into new ornaments.


The priests did their very best to cover the sanctum with bricks and send the smaller idols for safekeeping with trusted families. The forces however, kept driving further  in conquest.

People mourned the deaths of their near and dear in the struggle . 


The invaders were ruthlessly  attacking the temples and looting the jewellery .
It was a dark period for the Hindus  .


Hyder Ali  thus  invaded the Chandragiri Fort and marched in the surrounding areas to loot the temples . The ones who opposed were punished and were exiled.


 It was a bright sunny day . The green meadows and the hilly terrain was a treat to the eyes .Galloping on the horses they reached the foot of the Tirumala hills .

The magnificent Hills were a feast to watch . The aroma from the trees the water falls around  tempted the general to march ahead .

All of them looked closely  around .

The magnificent mountains and the seven peaks were looking stunningly beautiful with the glowing sun .


The news about the ruthless invaders reached the  temple priests  at Tirumala .


They  were very scared to face the enemy .

The news that they were looting other temples  was already known to them,but they never imagined that they would reach Tirupaty.


The Annual Brahmotsavam festival was in all glitters …

All of them assembled at the temple premises and chalked out a plan . The Senior Priest announced ,  My dear Swamin ! There is no escape now . We will be finished in no time the moment the evil  forces reach here .
Let us attempt to save our Lordships by carrying him along with us .

A old devotee replied , How are we going to leave the Hills ? Why not face the enemy bravely and sacrifice our lives than being cowards running away  .

This is VarahaKshetra and Lord Venkateshwara  has his own  plans . Let us seek his lotus feet and then decide . The suggestion was well taken …


All the devotees rushed to the temple sanctorum , offered a mangala haarathi and pleaded LORD for his mercy .  Oh Lord !Our Savior ….

We are in utter confusion ..

We will sacrifice our lives but will not allow the enemy to enter the temple .

Please save us from this agony.
Its your DIVINE WILL that’s final . 


The Elder Priest announced , Look  children  ! Its our turn .Let us face them bravely .

When HE is there why worry ?  LORD will never leave us …


All of them decided to sacrifice their lives than remaining as a  mute spectator . This was the last darshan .

With copious tears each went up near the LORD  had the last darshan feast fully  and left the temple . They  descended the Hills with anguish imagining that was their last darshan . The sun was radiating severe heat .

Passing the terrains and the hillocks the priests along with the devotees marched fearing sudden attack . They managed to reach   some where  near  to the foot  of the Hills  .The commotion was pathetic as the families also joined them fearing death and few escaping into the jungles calmly .

They reached  the last hillock and to their shock they saw a battalion  of armed forces on their horses looking all around .They had  weapons and looked ferocious . It seemed they had travelled from Chandragiri Fort  . The courage and enthusiasm to face the army suddenly vanished .

All of them were trembling with fear .


There was a shout from the battalion .  A stout man looked like the General  screamed …Hey !!! All of you come here ….He was looking dreadful ..

. He was speaking in  Urdu  . He screamed again …


Once again he yelled ….

Hey Bomman ……………… Uupar kyaa hain ?

( What is there over there )

jai jai naarasimha

The Priests were calm . All of a sudden they heard a  sweet voice among them .

All turned around . They saw a small boy  glowing with divine aura smiling and bravely walking before the army chief .


The voice was clear and gracious and  in the same language . For a minute the Army Chief Hyder Ali was bewildered . The Priests  were shocked to see the new entrant  .


Who is this boy ? He was not seen when we descended .Did he join us enroute ? Many questions were being whispered among them .


The boy bravely walked before Hyder Ali and replied .

Haan    …. Iss jagah pavitra hain …………Varah kshetra hai …

( This place is holy and is  resting place of  Varaha )

. Isey

Aadhi Varaha Kshetra kahatey hain

Hyder Ali is stuck with the boys beauty .

Naturally even a stone hearted person also will get intoxicated with HIS looks ….

 He said …….. Yeh bolo . …… Varaha matlab kyaa  hain ?

( What do you mean by Varaha  ? ) 


The moment he asked this question ,suddenly there was a loud noise from the hillocks . To the surprise of the devotees ,  Hundreds of wild boars in herds rushed in lightening speed making the army tremble and run for their lives .The whole battalion vanished in no time looking at the huge  boars chasing them .

jaya jaya

The place this divine leela happened was Adi Padi (  foot path in tamil )  and over a period of time got corrupted as Alipiri came from Ali-Phiri (Ali- returned). …( May be as Ali ..Hyder Ali  left ).

The Priests understood  the divine  boy was LORD himself who appeared to save them …

They chanted the holy names of LORD and ascended the HILLS with vigour and joy …

jai jai

Pilgrims take a vow to go on foot from  this place  Alipiri the gateway to  to Tirumala to have darshan of LORD .

There are two footways. 1) Alipiri footway and  2) Srivari mettu foot way  from the other side of the Hillocks near to Sri Kalyana Venkateshwara swamy Temple at Tirupathi.


 Alipiri ,  most used footway by piligrims is  9 km trek  . Enroute a pilgrim finds solace in the holy hills trekking watching hundreds of devotees chanting the HOLY NAME .

The pathway is  laid  with comfortable steps and shelters. There are  around 3500 steps and  it  takes approximately 3 – 4 hrs to climb as per once health and age Pilgrims can keep their luggage at Alipiri luggage center and can proceed to Tirumala. TTD runs two free buses from the Tirupati Railway station to Alipiri, with a frequency of 30 minutes. Pilgrims who intend to walk up the hills to Tirumala can use these buses.

Apart from buses there are many auto rickshaws to Alipiri from Bus stand, Railway station. Elders advise one to have a holy dip at Azhwar Theertham


( Presently called as Kapila Theertham ) and proceed to trek the Hills.


Adapted from a  discourse shared by Elders

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan


Pictures : credits Google Images uploaded by several Hari Bhaktas

Videos: Thanks to  Go Tirupaty web site , SaiGV  and Sri Hare Srinivas ( Tirumala Tirupati ) 


  1. Thanks for sharing it about Allpiri GATE way. I have not heard about Alipiri Gate way, whereas I went to Titumala Tirupathi through another gate way Srivari mettu foot way. We watch regularly on TTD TV Padmavathi Thayar Kalyanam and Perumal Kalyanam and evening Deepa Aarthi.
    Sriivasa Govinda, Sri Venkateswars Govinda.


  2. Hari Om!
    Another incident to instil FAITH during Emergencies….Yes what a human hand cannot do HE does…. GOVINDA…… GOVINDA……GOVINDA….Neither friends nor relatives nor onlookers can uplift us…but the Nama GOVINDA……This is Adiyen’s Subjective experience! Why everyone can’t approach Him as Alwars did? Nammalvar answers the same:”Ahalil Ahalum; Anuhil Anugum” -Tiruvai Mozhi-1-7-10
    -Adiyen Ramanuja Dasan – Jai Sriman Narayana!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Alipiri is truly gateway to TIRUMALA…today we are here to see the beauty of Tirumala because of such devotee’s…my salutations to them and I say GOVINDA , GOVINDA GOVINDA. .thanks for the post

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Enjoyed reading the blog and the mahatyam of Tirumalai. The description of Swamigal as a small boy and facing the Hyder Ali army and answering the questions of HyderAli are well described.Thanks Adiyen Kazhiyur Varadan.

    Liked by 1 person

Thank you very much for your valuable time reading the divine pastime. Please let us know your opinion for any improvements .kazhiyur varadan

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