The Hindu outfits called for a 12-hour hartal on Thursday amidst of the entry of two women, Kanakadurga (44) and Bindu (42), creating history by stepping into the hallowed precincts guarded by police officers three months after the Supreme Court’s historic judgement lifting the ban on entry of girls and women between 10 and 50 years of age into the shrine of Lord Ayyappa.
A bomb was hurled in front of Nedumangad police station. The bomb was hurdled thrice seeking the release of three accused taken into custody. Widespread attacks were witnessed towards the houses of CPM activists.
The shutdown turned violent at several places as incidents of vandalism were reported in Thiruvanathapuram, Calicut, Malappuram and others. Houses of five CPM leaders were also attacked, while eight local BJP workers were taken into preventive custody.
A 37-year-old man was stabbed during a clash between workers of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) in Thrissur, while two were injured. In Thiruvananthapuram, two Congress workers were hurt after CM’s cavalcade hit them while they were showing black flags to Pinarayi Vijayan near secretariat.
“It’s the government’s responsibility to give protection to women. The government has fulfilled this constitutional responsibility,” Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said. Hitting out at the BJP and RSS, the Chief Minister accused them of trying to make Sabarimala into a clash zone. “Violence unleashed by them will be dealt with strongly,” he said.
The Chief Minister’s reaction came after the BJP and CPI(M) workers clashed in front of the Secretariat for over five hours as police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse them after two women of menstruating age into the Sabarimala temple of Lord Ayyappa.
CM also said that, seven police vehicles, 79 KSRTC buses were vandalized and 39 police personnel attacked, till now.
“Most of the persons attacked were women. Women media persons were also attacked,” he added. He further stated that conducting hartal in name of women’s entry into Sabarimala temple is like calling hartal against the Supreme Court order.