Two-days ahead of the reopening of Sabarimala shrine, scheduled for November 5, Kerala police has practically took possession of the entire shrine into their control, from today itself. Tension mounted all over the Kerala state,. In view of recent violent protests and massive resistance by Ayyappa devotees, this time Kerala government is mobilising heavy police forces. Practically, now the entire shrine will be under their possession and war-like situation is prevailed around the shrine.
The police have decided to take control of the shrine by deploying a heavy force, right from Vadasserikara, situation about 50 km away from Pampa ahead of a day’s pooja. The district administration has already imposed prohibitory orders (Section 144) at Elavungal, Pampa, Nilakkal and Sunnidhanam, from Saturday night to Tuesday night.
The police have also declared Pampa, Nilakkal and Sannidhanam as special security zones and they will be managed by special teams led by senior police officers. This time the state government seems to be determined to facilitate entrance of women devotees, aged between 10 and 50 years, for darshan, following Supreme Court’s directive. Taking steps to ensure that no protesters will be around to block entry.
To ensure the entire stretch between Vadasserikara and Sannidhanam remained free of protesters, the force is being deployed right from today. The police have also decided to put in place tight restrictions on the movement of pilgrims from Nilakkal to Sannidhanam.
Meanwhile, the Kerala High Court has directed the government to produce the video footage of the incident that happened at Nilakkal when the Sabarimala temple was opened for poojas on October 17. The arrests in connection with Sabarimala violence have touched 3,701. So far 543 cases have been registered across the state for violence related to the entry of women in Sabarimala.
As per the directive of State Police Chief Loknath Behera, an ADGP, two IGs, 5 SPs and 10 DySPs will be camping at Nilakkal and Pampa to oversee the security measures in place which will be ensured with the deployment of nearly 1,200 police personnel.