TIRUPATI: Gold’s dazzling bull run has sent prices of the precious metal surging to all-time highs this year. But it has failed to dampen the enthusiasm of devotees to offer gold to the world’s richest Hindu temple trust — Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD).Gold donations to Tirumala’s presiding deity — Sri Venkateswara Swamy — have only been increasing, with TTD records showing a deposit of 1,031 kg of gold worth Rs 773 crore in 2023. The Tirupati trust has 11,329 kg of gold worth Rs 8,496 crore deposited in various nationalised banks under the gold monetisation scheme.The rising gold donations come at a time when prices have been on a record-busting spree, scaling the $2,400 per ounce mark for the first time on April 12 this year. In the past four years, when global uncertainty peaked beginning with the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, TTD received nearly four tonnes of gold as donation, an average of one tonne every year.Gold prices, which usually rise during uncertain times, crossed the $2,050 mark for the first time when the Covid-19 pandemic struck and have been propelled by the uncertain global economic climate as well as recent geopolitical tensions arising out of the IsraelIran crisis.TTD gets about 90kg to 100kg of gold every monthThe temple at Tirumala, which attracts millions of devotees from every corner of the globe, receives a record hundi collection of Rs 1,600 crore on averag e each year. TTD officials pointed out that devotees accord top priority to cash offerings to Lord Venkateswara Swamy with gold being the second most preferred form of donation to the lord of the riches.While the cash offerings received at the temple on an average every month are more than ₹100 crore, the temple also receives about 90kg to 100kg of gold every month.With about Rs 19,000 crore in fixed deposits, a gold stash of nearly 14 tonnes and 85,000 acres of property across the country, the Tirupati trust continues to maintain its lead as the ultra-richest temple body in the country.