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Sabarimala: BJP workers defy prohibitory orders, attempt to wave black flags at CM

Press Trust of India  |  Nilakkal/Chengannur 

Amid charges that the has diluted its agitation against the entry of young women into the temple, some party workers, led by its state B Gopalakrishnan, Sunday defied prohibitory orders at Nilakkal, the pilgrim base camp located about 20 km from the hill shrine.

Eight activists, who were on their way to Sabarimala, were stopped by police at They violated the prohibitory orders by squatting on road and chanting 'swamiye saram ayyappa'.

In an unrelated incident, activists of BJP's youth wing, Yuva Morcha, attempted to wave black flags at at Mulakkuzha near Chengannur when he was on his way to attend a function there.

Two people were arrested in connection with this incident, police said.

Five activists, who staged 'nama japa' (chanting of mantras) protest at the chief minister's programme venue, were also arrested, they said.

The women, who managed to enter the venue, stood up and chanted mantras when Vijayan was about to begin his speech.

Police rushed to the spot and removed them from the venue.

Gopalakrishnan later told reporters that the would continue to agitate till police lift the prohibitory orders and other restrictions imposed in and around the hill shrine.

He slammed the Vijayan-led for allegedly filing false cases against party K Surendran, who was arrested en route to last month.

The BJP recently announced its decision to shift its protest from the temple complex to the state capital. But since then, the party has been facing allegations that it was backtracking from the agitation.

BJP state P S Sreedharan Pillai had rejected the charges and said the move was to expand the stir across the state.

He had also said the party would launch an indefinite fast before the Secretariat from December 3 and block state ministers in support of its various demands, including lifting of prohibitory orders and providing basic amenities to pilgrims in and around the

Since the September 28 verdict of the Supreme Court, allowing women of all ages to enter the temple, no women in the 10-50 age group has been able to reach the shrine due to frenzied protests from devotees.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, December 02 2018. 19:00 IST