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TDB mulls celebrity ads to woo pilgrims to Sabarimala

Press Trust of India  |  Thiruvananthapuram 

The (TDB), the apex temple body in Kerala, is mulling to rope in celebrities including film stars for advertisements to woo devotees to the in

The plan is in consideration in view of the comparatively poor turnout of devotees even over two weeks after the temple opened up for the annual pilgrim season.

The advertisements are envisaged to alleviate fear among devotees in and outside regarding the recent developments in and woo them to the shrine during the two-month-long Mandalam-Makaravilakku season, which used to be marked by heavy rush and long queues in Sannidhanam, the temple complex.

A TDB official, who does not want to be quoted, however, said a final decision in this regard would be taken on December 3.

"We are considering a plan to bring out advertisements with celebrities. But a final decision in this will be taken only on December 3," he told

Prohibitory orders and restrictions imposed in and around the hilltop shrine in the wake of intense protests by devotees and right wing groups have largely affected the two month-long pilgrim season, which began on November 17.

The shrine had been witnessing protests against the implementation of the September 28 verdict permitting entry of women of all age groups into the temple.

The official, however, said the pilgrim inflow is steadily catching up in the recent days as police had eased the curbs.

"The number of pilgrims has registered a remarkable increase in the last few days. With this, the sale of appam and aravana (temple prasadam), which was comparatively dull in the initial week, has also increased," he said.

"Over 75,000 pilgrims have visited the shrine on Saturday till evening. The footfall was 61,000 on Friday. That means, the number of pilgrims is steadily increasing," he said.

However, the admitted that more than native people, devotees from neighbouring states like Tamil Nadu, and are trekking the hill shrine in large numbers.

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

First Published: Sun, December 02 2018. 14:50 IST