TOUTS and illegal parking attendants are having a field day earning heaps of money from tourists and visitors to the Snake Temple in Bayan Lepas, Penang.
A check by The Star yesterday found at least five touts operating in the temple vicinity and collecting RM2 from visitors who parked their vehicles along the road.
An attendant for the temple’s official car park said the temple charged visitors RM2 for weekends and public holidays, and RM1 on weekdays.
Temple coordinator Cheah Cheng Eng said the problem was not new but nobody had officially complained about the illegal parking attendants so far.
“Having said that, we hope that the police will help to detain the illegal parking attendants. We will write a letter to them about the issue and seek their assurance that this would not occur any more.”
Asked why the temple was receiving so many tourists over the past few days, he said most devotees would come to pray for health and prosperity from the Cheng Chooi Chor Soo deity leading up to its birthday which falls on Saturday.
Balik Pulau Deputy OCPD Deputy Supt Siti Nor Salawati Saad said it was common for these illegal parking attendants to turn up at the temple during the festive season.
She also assured the temple committee that action would be taken against such people.
Meanwhile, devotee Teresa Lee, 47, who was with her family, said she came to thetemple to pray for health and prosperity.
Her niece Mooi Wei Yee, 23, from the United States said this temple was different from others as the snakes gave it its own appeal.
“Today, I’ll be praying for good health and for things to work out in terms of my studies.”
Another devotee Edward Soon, 41, from Kedah, said he would be praying to the Cheng Chooi Chor Soo for his mother and nephew.
“My mum has been having arthritis and eyesight problems. So, I am praying for her health.
“My nephew has yet to secure a job, so I am praying hard that he will find one soon,” he said.