Yet another move to sabotage Sabarimala Pilgrimage; Devotees Lathicharged at Sabarimala.

published on January 7, 2014
High-handedness of police personnel on Sabarimala pilgrims has surfaced at the Lord Ayyappa temple, even as the Kerala High Court on Tuesday directed the special  police officer deployed at the hill shrine to avoid any kind of such action on the pilgrims.

The police late on Monday night resorted to caning the pilgrims who were waiting in queue for climbing the Holy Steps at the Lower Thirumuttam here.

The pilgrims, who were in the jam-packed queue for eight to nine hours for darshan, were beaten up without any provocation.

It is alleged that in the absence of senior officials, young policemen of armed battalions, resorted to this brutal act.

Warnings from onlookers, including mediapersons and devaswom employees, went in vain as the skirmish turned violent.

Absence of chief coordinator since the temple reopening for Makaravilakku season, lack of proper briefing for the police personnel to handle the crowd and posting of inexperienced cops are said to be the reasons.

A Division Bench comprising Justice T R Ramachandran Nair and B Kemal Pasha ordered that cops on duty will have to take steps for crowd management and should avoid  complaint of high-handedness from pilgrims, it said.

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