SABARIMALA: The unprecedented restrictions by the police on all private vehicles at the Nilakkal base camp has affected vehicles carrying food ingredients for free food distribution for pilgrims at Pampa and Sannidhanam. Though the issue was taken up with the police authorities at Nilakkal, hardly any follow-up action has been taken.
Voluntary organisations, including the Akhila Bharatha Ayyappa Seva Sangham and Sabarimala Ayyappa Seva Samajam, providing free food are in a fix over the total ban on vehicles. The organisations began free food distribution from day one of the ongoing pilgrimage season at Pampa and offer food to thousands of pilgrims in a day.
Though the organisations have buffer stock of rice, pulses and cooking oil, a shortage of vegetables has started affecting the preparation and distribution. If the situation continues for two more days, the food distribution at Pampa will be affected, said the ABASS spokesman. “Tonnes of vegetable brought from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka will go waste if the restrictions are not lifted in a day. The ABSS will bring the attention of the devaswom minister to take up the matter with the DGP,” he said.