No Basic Facilities arranged for Sabarimala pilgrims at transit points

via Courtesy:Daily Pioneer published on November 19, 2008

Kottayam and Chengannur in Alappuzha district are known to be the transit centres for lakhs of pilgrims to and from Sabarimala and the complaint is that the Government and the Devaswom Board have not bothered to arrange even the minimum basic facilities for them. Social organisations are preparing to approach the judiciary to get amenities for pilgrims arranged at these centres.

Chengannur, the nearest railhead for Sabarimala receives 10,000 pilgrims on an average during the peak of the season, and the people here and the devotees complain that there is virtually no facility available here. For so many people passing through this place, there are only five toilets, it is pointed out.

The demand for construction of at least 20 toilets in Chengannur has been there for years now, but the Devaswom authorities or the Government has not considered it seriously. Also there are not enough medical facilities in Chengannur. Similar complaints are being raised about the lack of sufficient number of toilets at Sannidhanam, where more than a million devotees could be present at one time during the peak of the season.

Subramanya Iyengar, an NRI from Tamil Nadu said in Chengannur that he had to take an autorikshaw to a hotel for using a toilet when he landed here on Monday, the second day of the pilgrimage season.

“There are some public toilets here but you cannot access them due to the huge rush. Even if you are able to reach there, you cannot use it due to the callous way in which these toilets are maintained,” he said.

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