Kerala: Communist govt’s excesses continue on Sabarimala devotees, more than 2000 detained

Interestingly, reports also emerged that several communists were quitting the CPM ranks owing to the communist government's excesses on devotees. 

Continuing their crackdown on Sabarimala protestors objecting the entry of women between the age of 10 and 50 years of age at the Sabarimala Temple, the Kerala Police have, so far, arrested 2000 people and registered 450 cases against them.

According to Kerala DGP Loknath Behera, many more people “stoking unrest” have been identified and if need be, more arrests will happen. He said they have constituted the police committee for seeking suggestions on ways to provide protection to women.

The protests in Sabarimala followed soon after the Supreme Court verdict of allowing women to enter the temple. Protestors prevented the entry of women of menstruating age into the shrine after it was opened – on October 17 – to the public for the first time since the court’s order. The shrine closed on October 22 after the monthly rituals were completed, but not a single woman between the ages of 10 and 50 was able to enter it, owing to the selfless and undeterred protests held by the devotees of Lord Ayyappa.

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Pinning the blame squarely on the Sangh and the BJP, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said that the Sangh and its associated parties have turned the Sabarimala temple into a conflict zone and are instigating the devotees to undermine the Supreme Court verdict. He also said that the Kerala government is committed to implementing the Supreme Court order. Interestingly, reports also emerged that several communists were quitting the CPM ranks owing to the communist government’s excesses on devotees.

The communist party is facing the ire of the devotees of Lord Ayappa for mishandling the protestors. It is but natural to see CM Vijayan shifting the blame on others to escape the fury of Sabarimala protestors by shirking his responsibilities. Earlier this week, the police had earlier arrested 1,400 people in connection with the protests. With a sea of people coming out to protect the sanctity of Sabarimala traditions, Kerala government’s handling of the issue will have a profound impact on the ensuing political slugfest in the state.

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