1,500 Cops, Commando Teams As Sabarimala Prepares To Reopen

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Prohibitory orders will come into force around Sabarimala from Saturday evening. (File)


Police are on high-alert and tight security arrangements are place as Sabarimala temple is set to open for monthly 'pujas' on November 5 after a period of violent protests over the entry of women of menstrual age.

Head priest Unnikrishnan Namboodiri will open the temple doors and light the lamp at the 'Sreekovil' (sanctum sanctorum) on November 5 at 5 pm.

According to a Kerala police press release 1,500 personnel are guarding Sabarimala and nearby areas. A 20-member commando team has been deployed at Sannidhanam, Nilackal and Pamba. Prohibitory orders will come into force from Saturday midnight.

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Barricades have been erected at many places en route to Nilackal and police is allowing vehicles only after checking.

Comprehensive traffic arrangements have been made in Pathnamthitta, where the shrine is situated. Private vehicles carrying pilgrims would be allowed to go only up to Nilackal, a base camp, police said.

Kerala police has introduced online booking for pilgrims, which would enable them to conveniently choose the day and time of 'darshan'.

According to officials, Kerala State Road Transport Corporation tickets are compulsory for all pilgrims, who reach Nilackal.

Kerala government has said it is ready for talks with the Nair Service Society (NSS), an outfit which is against entry of women of menstrual age into the hill shrine.

BJP leader K Surendran alleged that government had some "hidden agenda" on Sabarimala temple. He said the party's state president, PS Sreedharan Pillai, has received a "death threat" on Saturday.

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