In midst of unkept Promises, Sabarimala Season begins

published on November 16, 2006

Sabarimala season begins on Thursday

PATHANAMTHITTA: For the crores of Sabarimala pilgrims, the two-month Mandalapooja-Makaravilakku season which begins on Thursday will be the same as last year regarding facilities.

Though facilities like queue complexes on the trekking path between Pampa and Sannidhanam, widened roads, cardiology centre at Appachimedu and toilet complexes were planned, the schemes could not be implemented due to many reasons, mainly the failure of Ecosmart consultancy firm in providing detailed master plan and estimates coupled with the alleged negative attitude of the Forest Dept.

At Nilackal pilgrim transit camp too, hardly any additional facility, except the toilet complexes and an additional water storage tank, was available this season.

The Delhi-based Ecosmart, which entered into an agreement with the State Government in providing detailed project report and estimates of various projects at Sannidhanam, Pampa and Nilackal during the last Sabarimala season, backed out after availing of about Rs 50 lakh from the government.

T D B president G Raman Nair said that the additional facilities planned by TDB could not be implemented due to Ecosmart failure in giving the detailed Sabarimala master plan.

Though the TDB made a payment of about Rs 8 crore in lieu of the forest land at Nilackal, Sannidhanam and Pampa last, the Forest Department is yet to demarcate the land.

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