Sabarimala protests Highlights: Protesters vandalise bus carrying journalists, passengers near Nilakkal base camp

By: | Updated:Oct 17, 2018 9:38 pm

Sabarimala temple row: The doors of the Sabarimala temple opened at 5pm for the monthly rituals amid an ongoing protest against the Supreme Court's order to allow entry of women of all age groups. However, no woman between 10 and 50 years of age was allowed to enter the temple.

Sabarimala protests LIVE UpdatesSabarimala protests LIVE Updates: Protesters vandalise bus carrying journalists, passengers near Nilakkal base camp

Sabarimala temple row: The doors of the Sabarimala temple opened at 5pm for the monthly rituals amid an ongoing protest against the Supreme Court’s order to allow enetry of women of all age groups. However, no woman between 10 and 50 years of age were allowed to enter the temple. The development comes in the bakdrop of violent protests by the devotees including women who are opposed to the entry of women of menstruation cycle in the temple premises.

Earlier today, the LDF government had blamed the RSS and BJP for the crisis at the Sabarimala temple that is at the centre of a row over the entry of women between 10 and 50 age group. State minister VS Sunil accused the RSS and BJP of maintaining double standards on the issue as he claimed that those who argued in the favour of entry of women inside the temple are people linked to the two outfits. “On one hand, five advocates associated with the BJP file a petition in the Supreme Court demanding entry for women devotees in the Sabarimala temple and on the other hand, the BJP is leading the fight against the top court’s verdict,” he said.

“Now BJP trying to make it as a law and order issue,” Sunil said, adding that the LDF government is bound to implement the Supreme Court’s order.

Live Blog

Sabarimala protests: Tension grips Kerala as temple gates open

21:37 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Latest visuals from Sabarimala temple
19:44 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Protesters vandalise bus carrying journalists, passengers

According to a tweet by news agency ANI, protesters vandalise a bus carrying journalists, passengers near Nilakkal base camp. It said that protesters also pelted stones on the bus that was carrying scribes and devotees.

19:33 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
WATCH: Prayers offered at Sabarimala temple
19:24 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
MHA takes cognisance of incidents of violence

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Home Affairs has taken cognisance of the incidents of violence that took place in Kerala today. Earlier today, two female reporters were injured when the protesters turned their ire on the media contingent. The protesters were forcibly turning back women visiting the shrine. When police tried to calm the protesters, they pelted stones on them, prompting security officials to resort to lathi-charge.

19:04 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Section 144 imposed

According to ANI, the administration has imposed Section 144 in Pampa, Nilakkal, Sannidhanam and Elavungal to prevent mass gathering. The decision to impose Section 144 was taken after violent protests were reported against the Supreme Court's order allow women devotees to offer prayers at the Sabarimala temple.

18:49 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Latest visuals from Pampa
18:23 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
RSS workers attacking media personnel: Minister

Speaking on incidents of violence, Kerala minister EP Jayarajan said that said that the RSS is responsible for the ongoing crisis. He said: "RSS criminals hid in forests and attacked the Ayappa devotees. 10 media personnel, 5 devotees and 15 policemen were attacked."

18:09 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Section 144 to be imposed

The administration has announced that Section 144 will be imposed in four areas - Nillakkal, Pamba, Sannidhanam and Elavumkal - tomorrow to prevent mass gathering. Pathanamthitta District Collector PB Nooh said that police officials are stationed to ensure there is no obstruction and permissions will not be granted for any protests.

17:31 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
WATCH: Woman journalist in police van

Scores of women journalists were attacked by the protesters who were reached the base camp to cover news. Several OB vans were also damaged by the protests.

17:24 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Temple to remain open till October 22

The portals of Sabarimala Temple opened at 5pm today to allow devotees to offer prayers to Lord Ayyappa. Devotees will be allowed to offer prayers at the temple till 10.30 pm today. The portals of the temple will remain open till October 22.

17:22 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
RSS, BJP people attacking people: Congress

Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala said that his party workers are not involved in violent protests. He said that those who are protesting are the activists of RSS and BJP. “Congress is not attacking anybody and definitely attack on journalists is not tolerable. Those who are protesting there, are BJP and RSS people. Nowhere Congress people are engaged in this kind of hooliganism or vandalism,” he said.

17:09 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Latest visuals from Pamba
17:03 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple doors open

The doors of Sabarimala temple has been opened to allow devotees to offer prayers. However, no woman between 10 and 50 years of age were allowed to enter the temple. Protests are going on near the base camp since early morning against the Supreme Court's last month verdict.

16:59 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
NWMI condemns attacks on women journalists

Network of Women in Media - India vehemently denounced attacks on journalists, including several women journalists, at Nilakkal/Sabarimala. In a statement issued here, it said: “We demand that CM and Kerala government take immediate action against agitators who let violent assailants loose on journalists. It said that it is incumbent on the government to create a secure environment for journalists to report from Pamba and nearby areas on an issue that is of interest and concern to public. Government must immediately ensure safety of journalists and assure media that lives of reporters are not in danger.

16:53 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Emergency police team deployed to Sabarimala

Meanwhile, the administration has deployed emergency police team to the Sabarimala temple where protests are going on since early morning against the Supreme Court's last month order to allow women of all age group to offer prayers to the Lord Ayyappa.

16:47 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Congress blames LDF, BJP for crisis

Ramesh Chennithala of Congress said that both the CPM-led government and BJP are creating problems in Sabarimala. “We are opposed to any kind of untoward incident in temple.”

16:42 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
BJP blames LDF government for violence

Bharatiya Janata Party leader MS Kumar said that LDF government is fully responsible for any law and order situation in the state. He said that it is a very unfortunate situation as he rejected allegation that the protests at the base camp were fueled by the BJP. “We aren't responsible. No BJP worker is involved,” he said.

16:34 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Activist Rahul Easwar arrested

Activist Rahul Easwar has been arrested by from Nilakkal base camp. ANi reported that a non-bailable FIR has been registered against him. He is presently kept at Pamba police station. Speaking to ANI, Easwar said: "I didn't hit any woman there. I was moving to the other direction. It's a vendetta against me."

16:26 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
WATCH: Police resort to lathicharge

Police resorted to lathicharge and pelted stones on protesters near the Nilakkal base camp.

16:21 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
NCW takes cognizance of attack on journalists

The National Commission for Women (NCW) has taken cognizance of the attack on women journalists near the Sabarimala temple. ANi reported that a A meeting is underway at NCW office to discuss the further steps to be taken in this regard. Ealier today, two female journalists of a leading news channel were heckled by  the protesters when they arrived here to cover the story. They were not allowed to proceed towards the temple and were forced to return.

15:44 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Dirty politics, says Kerala minister

Kerala Minister KK Shailaja said that protesters are indulging in dirty politics by blocking women devotees. Speaking to newsy agency ANI, Shailaja said that the order passed by the Supreme Court is constitutional and the government is bound to implement it. “I can predict what is going on there, I think it is intentional, it is dirty politics they (protesters) are playing.”

15:25 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Commandos reaching soon

Commandos reaching the temple site soon. Kerala DGP states that 300 more police personnel to join the personnel at Sabarimala.

15:09 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Protesters attack woman journalist's car in Pathanamthitta

Video: Protesters block and attack a woman journalist's car in Pathanamthitta

15:03 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: RSS & BJP taking double standards, says Kerala minister VS Sunil

RSS & BJP is taking double standards. On one hand, 5 advocates associated with BJP gave petition in SC over the entry of women of all ages in Sabarimala temple,on the other hand, BJP is leading the fight against the verdict. Now BJP trying to make it as a law&order issue:, ANI quoted Kerala minister VS Sunil as saying.

15:00 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Police personnel outnumbered by devotees

Police personnel outnumbered by increasing number of devotees arriving for darshan at Sabarimala

15:00 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Protestors chant 'Nama Japa mantra'

Protesters to continue 'Nama Japa mantra' chanting to mark their protest against women's entry to Sabarimala temple.

14:48 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: 50 taken into custody in Pathanamthitta

50 people have been taken into custody in Pathanamthitta district.

14:47 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: 20 people taken into custody in Nilakkal and Pamba.

Over 20 people including former Travancore Devaswom Board president Prayar Gopalakrishnan taken into custody in Nilakkal and Pamba.

14:44 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Congress holds protests against entry

Congress party leaders hold a peaceful protest in Nilakkal against the entry of women in the age group of 10-50.

14:42 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Women reporters heckled in Nilakkal

Women reporters heckled and attacked, stones pelted at police vehicle and tensions prevail in Nilakkal, stones pelted at police vehicle

14:41 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Madhavi returned mid-way along with her relatives after facing protests

A woman Madhavi on her way to Sabarimala temple returned mid-way along with her relatives after facing protests

13:13 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala row: Kerala BJP leader says protest to continue

"Peaceful protests will continue. This protest is to save faith and Dharma," said P.S. Sreedharan Pillai, Kerala BJP

12:02 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Protesters held

Protesters were held by Kerala police

11:59 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Kerala police appeals to protesters

As per local news reports, members of Ayyappa Dharma Sena have also been arrested. Kerala police has appealed to protesters asking them not to block vehicles and devotees from entry.

11:45 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Protesters arrested

Kerala police have arrested some protesters who had blocked women devotees.

11:32 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
RSS workers stationed at Nilakkal, chanting Ayyappa hymns

There are dozens of RSS workers stationed at Nilakkal who are chanting Ayyappa hymns, but they have abandoned attempts to stop cars or buses, Indian Express reported.

11:26 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
No one will be stopped from going to temple: Kerala top cop

None would be stopped nor would anyone be allowed to take the law into their hands. Sabarimala is safe and anyone can come and pray. There is a very strong police presence in and around the temple, Loknath Behra, state police chief, told the media on Wednesday.

11:09 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Tribals allege govt trying to demolish centuries-old customs

Tribals living in the hills around Sabarimala alleged that the government and the Travancore Devaswom Board were trying to demolish centuries-old customs by allowing entry of women in the 10-50 age group into the famous Sabarimala temple, news agency PTI reported. They claimed that restrictions imposed on women in the menstruating age group were part of a custom prevailing in tribal societies living in the forests in Kerala.

11:01 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Andhra woman returns to base camp

Local reports say Andhra woman returns to base camp without going further. The police personnel helped her to enter but due to protesters surrounding her and the fact that there were no police personnel to assist her after a certain point, the Andhra women devotees had to turn back.

10:56 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Women devotees not allowed to undertake yatra

According to TV reports, a few women devotees were not allowed to undertake the yatra to Sabarimala temple today.

10:53 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Women protest in Nilakkal

Women protest in Nilakkal against the entry of women in the age group of 10-50

10:42 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Protests near Pamba base camp

Protests are being held near Pamba base camp against entry of women in the age group 10-50.

10:36 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Read statement by Udit Raj

'It has happened for the 1st time in the world, it's amusing. Make me a slave,treat me unequally, we're inferior to men; women are stopping women. What's the point in this. I don't know what's happening in this nation. It's my personal opinion, not political,' said Udit Raj.

10:35 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Subramanian Swamy speaks

'Supreme Court has made a decision, but now you are saying that it's our tradition. Triple Talaq is also a tradition in that way, everybody was applauding when it was abolished. The same Hindus have come on the streets now,' said Subramanian Swamy.

10:33 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple row: Kerala CM leaves for Abu Dhabi

The Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan has left for UAE capital Abu Dhabi

10:23 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple: Massive security deployment

A massive 1000 security personnel, including 200 women, were deployed at Nillekal and Pampa base. A total of 500 security personnel deployed at Sannidhanam.

10:19 (IST) 17 Oct 2018
Sabarimala temple: High tension prevails, devotees expressed anger

High tension prevails in Sabarimala after a Cherthala based woman devotee named Libby has been stopped by Ayyappa devotees, who are raising angry 'Sharanam Ayyappa' slogans. Devotees expressed anger to reporters with regard to her entry and police officials are struggling to keep the situation under control. Speaking to reporters, Libby has stated that she is determined to enter. Kerala police is with Libby, trying to calm the angry mob.

Police is seen deployed at the Nilakkal Base Camp to prevent clashes between women of menstrual age entering the Sabarimala temple for the first time in centuries and conservative Hindu groups out to stop them, in Pathanamthitta, in the southern state of Kerala, India, October 17, 2018. REUTERS/Sivaram V Last month, the Supreme Court had lifted the ban on the entry of women of menstrual ages and upheld equal rights of women to worship at the temple under Article 25 of the Constitution. Meanwhile, a strong contingent of police forces have been deployed in Nilackal, kilometres ahead of the Sabarimala hilltop. Also, members of Sabarimala Achara Samrakshana Samiti, a group which was staging a sit-in protest and chanting Ayyappa mantra against the Supreme Court verdict, have been evicted by the police. Even though Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said that no one will be allowed to block devotees from proceeding to Sabarimala temple, hundreds of devotees in private vehicles were and Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses were stopped by protesters. While women between 10-50 age group were not allowed to proceed further and told to go back, women above 50 were allowed to complete the yatra. The temple will remain open till October 22. The five-day monthly prayer is held during the Malayalam month of Thulam.
Switch to Hindi Edition