Sabarimala protests HIGHLIGHTS: Amid Nilakkal stand off, BJP secretary K Surendran detained by policehttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/sabarimala-temple-protests-live-updates-kerala-shutdown-5450940/

Sabarimala protests HIGHLIGHTS: Amid Nilakkal stand off, BJP secretary K Surendran detained by police

Sabarimala protests HIGHLIGHTS: The Sabarimala temple opened Friday evening for a two-month long pilgrimage season amid tight security.

Pilgrims on their way to Sabarimala temple with the ‘irumudikettu’ on their head. (Express photo by Vishnu Varma)

Thousands of pilgrims offered prayers at Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala early Saturday, the first day of Malayalam month of ‘Vrischikom,’ even as a 12-hour shutdown was initiated against the preventive detention of a Hindu Aikya Vedi leader. Pilgrims, including children, queued up in large numbers since the temple opened at 3 am, PTI reported.

Hindu Aikyavedi state President K P Sasikala was later released on a bail after the court the same day after she was issued a showcause notice, while the dawn to dusk shutdown continued in the state. A young couple traveling in a car were attacked by protesters for defying the hartal and were immediately rushed to a hospital, said The News Minute report.

Read | 7 years after tragedy, Sabarimala order might pose next big challenge for Sathram route

The Travancore Decvaswom Board which manages the shrine announced its decision to move Supreme Court seeking more time to implement its verdict. Police personnel were on their toes until late evening today as they also detained BJP Secretary K Surendran citing law and order concern.

Normal life was affected in the state as the shutdown progressed public transport services were disrupted, however buses in Sabarimala continued plying.

Live Blog

Sabarimala temple in Kerala opened Friday amid tight security. Activist Trupti Desai returned to Mumbai after a standoff with protesters. Follow HIGHLIGHTS. Read latest news in Malayalam.

March taken out by Sabarimala Karmasena in Ernakulam's Moothakunnam in protest against the arrest of Sasikala

(Express photo by Harikrishnan KR)

Surendran was not allowed to proceed to the shrine due to security concerns

Surendran, who was carrying the 'Irrumudikettu' (bundle containing offerings for the Lord), was told by a police team led by Yatish Chandra, Superintendent of Police, not to proceed to the shrine as it would create law and order problems. Surendran told the police he had come as a 'Ayyappa Bhaktha' (devotee) and should be allowed to pray at the temple. Chanting 'Swamiyae Ayyappa', Surendran and others with him jostled with police and tried to move forward saying there was no question of going back. Three of his supporters were also with Surendran when he tried to leave for the shrine.

BJP secretary taken into preventive custody at Nilakkal base camp

BJP general secretary K Surendran and Thrissur district president A Nagesh detained by police from Nilakkal base camp when they attempted to go to Sabarimala.  Police state deterioration of law and order in the area if they are allowed to pass. 

Police taking BJP State general secretary K Surendran in preventive custody from Nilakkal.

All quiet on tougher alternate route to Sabarimala, but Sathram is not taking any chances

The 12.5 km route, that begins at Sathram – a tiny village surrounded by tea estates – involves an initial steep, uphill trek of 2-km and then meanders through the deep jungles of the Periyar Tiger Reserve, home to wild elephants, gaurs and of course, tigers. Despite its adverse geographical contours, this route offers pilgrims the advantage of reaching the ‘sannidhanam’ (main temple) at Sabarimala directly, bypassing the long queues at Pamba and Nilakkal, the main base camps of the shrine. Read full article 

K P Sasikala granted bail, heads to shrine for darshan

Hindu Aikyavedi state President K P Sasikala who was taken under preventive custody on Friday evening has been granted bail. The court has issued a showcause notice, as the activist continues to move forward on her pilgrimage to the temple. While she has been provided with security and is now heading to base camp Pamba, Sasikala has been asked to return as soon as her darshan is over. 

Young couple traveling in a car allegedly attacked by protesters for defying hartal

In Kuttiyadi, Kozhikode, a young couple travelling in a car were allegedly stopped and attacked by protestors, who were enforcing a hartal on Saturday. Julius Nikithas, son of former MLA KK Lathika and CPI (M) district secretary P Mohanan, and his wife Saniyo Manomi, a reporter with Asianet, were injured in the attack, Kuttiyadi police SI said. “He was taken to the Kuttiyadi hospital. The wife too was beaten. They are being taken to the Kozhikode Medical College,” the SI told The News Minute.  According to regional news channel Asianet, the couple was travelling from Saniyo’s house in Paleri to Julius’s house in Ambalakkulangara. A gang of ten stopped the car at Ambalakkulangara and allegedly attacked them, taking the car keys and dragging the couple out. Julius was wounded in the attack, and sustained a nose bleed. Saniyo was also allegedly beaten on her chest and below her stomach.

BJP has become hartal party of Kerala: Thomas Isaac

Kerala Finance Minister tweeted about Sasikala's arrest, said if one breaks the law, they will be booked

RSS leader alleges 'brutal crackdown' on Hindus in Kerala

Kerala BJP condemns the preventive custody of activist K P Sasikala

LDF govt failed to arrange basic necessities: BJP Keralam

BJP Keralam said in a tweet that the LDF government had failed completely to arrange basic necessities to protect Sabarimala pilgrims right to worship. 

Rahul Easwar tweets video urging people to co-operate with police

Visuals from Lord Ayyappa temple

A police commando keeps vigil as devotees wait to offer prayers at Lord Ayyappa temple on the first day of Malayalam month of 'Vrischikom,' in Sabarimala, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. Pilgrims, including children, queued up in large numbers since the temple opened at 3 am. (PTI Photo)

Devotees wait to offer prayers at Lord Ayyappa temple on the first day of Malayalam month of 'Vrischikom,' in Sabarimala, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. (PTI Photo)

Travancore Devaswom Board to move SC on Monday

The Travancore Devaswom Board, which manages the Sabarimala shrine, would move the Supreme Court on Monday seeking more time to implement its order allowing women of menstrual age to offer prayers at the Lord Ayyappa temple.

"We will move the Supreme court on Monday through Advocate Chandra Uday Singh" TDB President A Padmakumar was quoted as saying by PTI. 

Drones being used for security surveillance

KSRTC running buses in Sabarimala with police protection

KSRTC Managing Director Tomin J Thachankary said the corporation was running buses in Sabarimala with police protection to help pilgrims reach the temple, news agency PTI reported. 

In Balrampuram near Thiruvananthapuram, protesters attacked a KSRTC bus and damaged its windows, he added.

Despite shutdown, thousands offer prayers at Sabarimala temple

Thousands of pilgrims offered prayers at Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala early Saturday, the first day of Malayalam month of 'Vrischikom,' even as a 12-hour shutdown against the preventive detention of a Hindu Aikya Vedi leader began. Pilgrims, including children, queued up in large numbers since the temple opened at 3 am, PTI reported.

Photos from Sathram-Pullumedu route

The route through Sathram and Pullumedu is an alternative forest route for pilgrims to Sabarimala. Entry through this route is only allowed from 7 am to 2 pm. Today, 73 people have gone this way since morning. Over 120 police officers along with additional forest department staff are stationed at Sathram alone.

Few pilgrims take this route as it is considered a tougher trek due to the presence of wild animals. 

Express editorial | Pilgrim’s progress

The decision of the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), the autonomous body responsible for the running of the Sabarimala shrine, to seek more time from the Supreme Court to implement its order on the entry of women of all age groups to the temple is a step in the right direction.  Read more

Shutdown affects normal life in Kerala

The crowd in front of a petrol pump in Trivandrum. This is the only fuel station opened in the city today due to the unexpected shut down called by Hindu outfits.
Commuters being carried in police vehicles due to non-availability of transportation in wake of the shutdown.
The always busy bus station at East Fort in Trivandrum seen deserted. 

Devotees begin the trek from Pampa to Sabarimala temple.

The temple opened yesterday for 62-day long Mandala Pooja-Magaravilaku annual pilgrimage season.



(Source: ANI)

CM Pinarayi Vijayan appeals for cooperation

'We request the cooperation of all to ensure a peaceful Mandala - Makaravilakku pilgrimage season in Sabarimala. The objective of the Government is to uphold the esteem of Sabarimala temple, which is a major pilgrim centre in the country and is a place of worship of all people,' Vijayan said in a Facebook post on Friday. 

Urging people to not fall for fake news, the CM said, 'Media must also take care to not publish misinformation that can cause disturbances. Some are also using social media networks to propagate misinformation with an intent to disturb peace. Such activities must be monitored and reported to the authorities. People who love Sabarimala and Kerala must not fall for such misinformation that is part of a propaganda'.

Shut-down triggered by arrest of Hindu Aikya Vedi leader

As Right Wing organisations observe a hartal in Kerala over her detention, Hindu Aikya Vedi secretary K P Sasikala has been kept in preventive custody at the Ranni police station.

Hindu Aikyavedi leader Bhargavaram, Sabarimala Achara Samsrakshana Samiti general secretary Prithvipal and BJP ST Morcha state chief P Sudhir have also been taken in custody fearing trouble if they reached the temple. Read more

Essential services and vehicles of Ayyappa devotees will not be affected by the hartal: VHP

Speaking to PTI, VHP state president S J R Kumar said that essential services and vehicles of Ayyappa devotees will not be affected by the Shutdown.

Shutdown called in Kerala

Rightwing Hindu outfits have called for a dawn to dusk hartal in Kerala Saturday in protest against the arrest of a senior Sangh Parivar leader who was on the pilgrimage to Sabarimala Lord Ayyappa temple, PTI reported. 

VHP state president S J R Kumar alleged that Hindu Aikyavedi state President K P Sasikala was arrested by police near Marakkoottam near Sabarimala at 2.30 am Saturday.

"She was arrested as she was on the way to the hill shrine carrying irumudikkettu (bundle carrying sacred offerings) to offer prayers. Some other activists have been taken into preventive custody," Kumar told PTI.

Trupti Desai should try going to Sabarimala after attaining 50 yrs of age: Protesters outside Mumbai airport

Trupti Desai greeted by protesters upon return

Sabarimala: Police personnel stand guard as the Sabarimala temple opens for a two-month long pilgrim season, in Sabarimala, Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. (PTI Photo)

Sabarimala temple protests live updates:  KSRTC Managing Director Tomin J Thachankary said the corporation was running buses in Sabarimala with police protection to help pilgrims reach the temple.

Yesterday, after a 14-hour standoff, social activist Trupti Desai, who landed in Cochin airport from Mumbai to undertake the pilgrimage, was sent back due to protests by devotees.

Read |‘Trupti Desai has a dictatorial attitude, doesn’t like her colleagues to get spotlight’

Desai, who arrived at the airport with six women colleagues, said she would return as police informed her that there would be law and order problem if she visited the shrine. However, she vowed to come back to the state soon to have darshan of Lord Ayyapa. The activist was also greeted by protesters upon return outside the Mumbai airport. She and the other women had to be escorted with the help of CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) jawans and Mumbai police personnel.

Amid tight security, the shrine opened on Friday for the third time, ever since the SC judgment, in the presence of head priest Kandararu Rajeevaru. However, no girl or woman pilgrim in the 10-50 age group could offer prayers so far. The 41-day mandalam festival will conclude on December 27 after Mandala pooja, when the shrine will close after the 'Athazhapuja' in the evening. It would reopen for the Makaravilakku festival on December 30.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan sought cooperation from everyone to ensure that the two-month-long pilgrimage season at the Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala passes off peacefully.