The Kerala High Court has lashed out at the Communist Kerala government for its high-handedness and brutality in dealing with Hindu devotees present at the Sabarimala shrine. The Kerala High Court observations come hours after the Kerala police forcefully evicted several Hindu devotees from the Sabarimala temple.
Hearing a petition, the Kerala HC pointed out that under the pretext of implementing the controversial Supreme Court judgement to allow women of all ages to enter the shrine, the Kerala Police cannot harass Hindu devotees and ordinary pilgrims by denying them their right.
The special bench headed by Justice P R Ramachandra Menon observed that arrangements made by the Kerala Police were causing hardships to genuine devotees. The bench further asked the State Attorney under what authority police can restrict devotees’ right to worship. They also slammed the Kerala police for pumping water on devotees in ‘nadappanthal’ and other places to prevent Hindu devotees from entering the shrine.
While considering a petition on ‘atrocities’ against the Hindu devotees, the bench said that police “should normally be confined to their barracks instead of trespassing into spaces reserved for pilgrims”. The bench also came down heavily on the Kerala government for its failure to arrange enough food and water in between Nilackal and Sannidhanam causing huge inconvenience to devotees.
The bench has also criticised the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) for their “failure in conducting regular services to Pampa.” The bench said that the Court may issue directions to permit the use of private vehicles till Pampa if similar conditions exist in future.
In the garb of implementing Supreme Court judgement, the Kerala government with the help of state police force had turned the area near Sabarimala into a war zone after some devotees had clashed with the police. The Kerala police had reportedly resorted to stone pelting and lathi charging against devotees after situation went out of control.
Soon after that, the Kerala High Court while hearing a petition seeking to restrict entry of non-Hindus in Sabarimala temple, had expressed its displeasure over the police excesses at the Sabarimala temple. The Kerala High Court while hearing a similar petition in the past had warned the Communist Kerala government led by Pinarayi Vijayan for its undue interference in Sabarimala’s religious affairs and asked the government to restrict itself to providing adequate security to the devotees visiting the shrine.