Meanwhile, the founder of Bhumata Brigade and social activists Trupti Desai who vowed to offer prayers at Sabarimala temple has dropped her plan to visit the shrine after she was asked to return to Pune. Sabarimala pilgrims are not extremists.
Pilgrims had said there was lack of adequate toilet facilities, causing huge difficulties especially to women, and rest rooms after the floods in August that had destroyed the infrastructure.
This is the sum total of what has happened during the last 24 hours in Sabarimala underscoring Team Pguru's earlier reports that Kerala is no more a safe place for Hindus. "The government can not let anyone create trouble at Sabarimala", the chief minister said at the state conference of the Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ). "The BJP will strengthen its protests and support the hartal".
BJP leaders and activists started to block traffic across the state on the highways since 10 a.m. Almost a hundred devotees held protests while chanting "nama japam".
The Sabarimala temple in the southern state of Kerala has become a major battleground between Hindu radicals and gender activists.
Asserting that his government was with the devotees, Vijayan said it was being targeted for trying to implement the Supreme Court order permitting entry of all women into the Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. Accordingly, Sasikala was produced before a sub-divisional magistrate, after which, she was granted bail by the police.
Image The temple has found itself at the centre of a national debate
It was all a well-planned protest held at Sabarimala and Chief Minister's official residence at Thiruvananthapuram, says Surendran. "Those who create violence in the name of God are not devotees at all".
Union minister K.J. Alphons is scheduled to visit the Sabarimala temple on Monday. "Some of the toilets are built 5 feet high, how are people suppose to go in there", asked the minister.
The Kerala government met on November 15 and said it had no other option but to implement the September 28 Supreme Court order, following which the opposition walked out in protest describing the meeting as a "farce". "This is not the way a government should function, not by declaring war against its people", KJ Alphons told the media.
"We have organised state-wide protest against this emergency like situation in the state", Yuvamorcha state president Prakash Babu told PTI.
"Section 144 had been declared in the area", said Superintendent of Police (Special Officer) Pratheesh Kumar.
After offering prayers at the Lord Ayyappa temple here as part of reviewing the preparations for the annual pilgrimage at Nilakkal and Pampa on Sunday, the Congress leaders said Pinarayi was using the police to deny the constitutionally enshrined right to freedom of worship and follow ongoing practices.
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Instead, they need to start looking at the gap between themselves and the Champions League qualification places. Their next challenge is the European Cup, the Champions League.