SABARIMALA: DevaswoM Minister Kadakampally Surendran ruffled a few feathers on Thursday when he said no woman of restricted age group has made it to Sabarimala so far because the government had no intention of sending them for darshan. However, after news portals picked up his remarks, Kadakampally, in a Facebook post, said there were attempts by some media houses to misquote him for the past few days.
Responding to a poser on Sabarimala, the minister told reporters: “There should be no misconception that it’s due to the protests of some miscreants or their chants the women are unable to enter the hill shrine for darshan. The government has no interest in sending women of the restricted age group to Sabarimala. It has reiterated this earlier too,” he said, adding, “If there was any such intention, it would have been made possible by all means,” he said.
At the same time, he said the government was for implementing the Supreme Court order which had lifted the ban on women of a particular age group to visit and offer prayers at Sabarimala. Kadakampally later accused a particular section of the media of twisting his statements. “This government had welcomed the Supreme Court verdict and is bound to implement it. The government can’t use force to facilitate women’s entry to the hill shrine,” he added.
Cops’ role to be probed
Kadakampally said the government will order a probe into the alleged role of the police in helping the women members of Maniti – currently the subject of an NIA inquiry for its Maoist links – in climbing the trekking path to offer worship at Lord Ayyappa temple here.
“The Home Department will probe the cops’ favour to Maniti women, including the nine-member police escort which accompanied them from Cumbom in Tamil Nadu to Pampa,” he said. He also said the government will offer more basic facilities to pilgrims during the Makaravilakku season.
“Additional parking facilities will be provided during the Makaravilakku season by felling 400 trees. A full-fledged government hospital will be set up at Nilakkal replacing the temporary hospital,” he said.
Women’s wall is an extreme misuse of power: Mullappally
T’Puram: The misuse of power for the women’s wall is in the extreme and never heard of in the history of Kerala, said KPCC president Mullappally Ramachandran. He said Kudumbashree and Asha workers, ICDS supervisors, Literacy Mission promoters, SC/ST promoters, employment guarantee workers were all forced to join the Women’s Wall through threats. Mullappally said fascist regimes work like this and the Chief Minister, an elected democratic representative, is forgetting this. The Chief Minister’s body language, his nature of speaking and attitude are all clear examples of his Stalinist attitude, and he has no respect for the people of the state, said Mullappally. The senior Congress leader said the affidavit given in the High Court and the manner in which the government is conducting things are at variance and added the Chief Minister should understand history has never forgiven those who ruled with arrogance and a dictatorial attitude. Mullappaly said the CM is challenging the politically conscious and highly educated Kerala society with impunity. The people of the state will teach the CM and his party a lesson in the next general elections, he said.
Ayyappa Jyothi violence:Cases against 40 CPM workers
Kannur: The police have registered cases against 40 CPM/DYFI workers pertaining to the violent incidents at Perumba on Wednesday in connection with the lighting up of Ayyappa Jyothi in Payyannur. The case was taken based on the complaint lodged by V V Ramachandran, Ayyappa Seva Sangham leader, with the Payyannur police. Ramachandran complained that the CPM workers attacked him and BJP local leader Kumaran with the intention of killing them. Those forty CPM workers in two-wheelers were following 200 young women belonging to the CPM, who were campaigning for the women’s wall. There were widespread attacks against the lighting up of Ayyappa Jyothi at Karivellur, Perumba, Palathara and Kandoth on Wednesday, said the complaint, which alleged that the CPM workers who came in large numbers obstructed the lighting up of lamp at many places. Six buses, in which Sabarimala Karma Samithi brought in workers, were allegedly attacked at Palathara and Annur. In the scuffles that ensued between the CPM workers and the devotees, a few female cops were injured. Announcement vehicles were also allegedly attacked by CPM workers.