Security tightened at Sabarimala ahead of verdict

Thiruvananthapuram: With the Supreme Court all set to pronounce final verdict on the entry of all women to the Kerala's famed Sabarimala temple on Thursday, the state police has made elaborate security arrangements for the temple town to ensure security as the two-month long festival kicks off on Sunday.

The fresh season opens on Sunday and closes on January 21.

Kerala police do not want to take any chances this time, particularly in the wake of the large scale protest and violence that occurred last year following the apex court verdict allowing all women to enter the temple. Right wing groups had stood guard, chased women, preventing them from entering into the temple.

With the top court now expected to give its final verdict after 64 review petitions were filed asking it to ensure that traditions and culture of the famed temple is maintained.

The police have classified the two month long season into four segments with the first two weeks starting on November 15 to November 29 and in all 2,551 police personnel would be posted in and around the temple complex.

The second phase would see 2,539 personnel and would be on duty from November 30 to December 14, and the third one beginning December 15 to 29 and would see 2,992 officials on duty.

The fourth and the most important period begins from December 30 till the close of the temple, would see 3,077 personnel trying their best to see that the verdict was adhered to in letter and spirit.

The entire security arrangements is led by additional director general of police Sheikh Darwesh Sahib.

The duty roster will see 24 SPs and ASPs, 112 deputy SPs, 264 Inspectors, 1185 SIs and ASIs, 8,402 civil police officials manning the security arrangements.

The list also includes 307 women personnel including 30 women inspectors and SI's.

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