Thiruvananthapuram/ Kochi, Oct 17 (IECurrentAffairs) Ayyappa devotees opposing the entry of women in the 10-50 age group, after the Supreme Court had recently allowed them, had a skirmish with the police at Pathanamthitta while tension prevailed at Nilakkal even as police chased away some devotees who tired to prevent women from going to the world famous Sabarimala temple.
Tension prevailed at Nilakkal when the police prevented Rahul Easwar, one of the member of Tantri Family and hundreds of devotees from proceeding to Pamba early on Wednesday morning.
The devotees clashed with the police when Rahul Easwar, his 90-year-old grandmother and hundreds of devotees, who accompanied them to the hill shrine, were deboarded from their vehicles by the police at Nilakkal, the base camp at 0415 hrs.
Last night, several interior places were virtually turned as a battle ground when the devotees clashed with the police.
Early Wednesday morning, the police also arrested a few people who blocked the roads and conducted searches on vehicles enroute to Sabarimala.
Hundreds of police men and women police personnel were deployed at various places including Nilakkal and Pamba. ADGP Amit Kanth and Range IG Manoj Abraham were taking stock of the situation.
The agitators deboarded women from buses as part of preventing young women entry into the Lord Ayyappa temple.
The police swung into action following Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s statement that no one will be allowed to take the law into their own hands.
He also said Congress, BJP and RSS are trying to break the secular mind of the state by supporting devotees who are opposing the SC verdict.
The Chief Minister addressing an explanatory meeting last evening said the SC verdict cannot be overcome through an ordinance or legislation.
Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said the Congress-led UDF will conduct a month-long public awareness on Sabarimala issue.
He alleged that CPI-M and BJP were trying to convert Sabarimala as a war zone to encash mileage out of it.
The Left Government is fully responsible for the present crisis as they withdrew the affidavit given by previous UDF Govt in SC in 2016 and filed a fresh affidavit stating women of all ages can be given entry to the temple.