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Kerala

HC stands with Govt on ban orders at Sabarimala

The State Government, which has been under flak over the Sabarimala issue, including the imposition of prohibitory orders, has reasons to cheer with Kerala High Court commending it for smooth pilgrimage for devotees at the shrine.

This was based on the report of the court-appointed high-level committee to monitor the affairs at Sabarimala. The committee is said to have reported that pilgrims had little difficulty and on Monday, there was a record 80,000 devotees, nearly matching levels during previous seasons.

The court observed that the committee was satisfied with the arrangements made for pilgrims at the shrine as also at the base camps of Pamba and Nilackal.

Even on the contentious issue of prohibitory orders at Sabarimala, the Government appeared vindicated with the court stating that the committee felt everything was going smooth. This comes when the court had earlier pulled up the Government over the issue of ban orders under Section 144.

The court accepted the affidavit filed by the Additional District Magistrate and wanted to know who faced problems because of the orders.

The affidavit said the prohibitory orders were part of law and order maintenance and aimed at only ensuring security of pilgrims. The orders were in no way a hindrance to pilgrims who were freely allowed to worship and offer prayers.