24-hour control room planned by Forest Dept in Sabarimala

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Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 11 (UNI) Kerala Forest Minister Binoy Viswam today said a 24-hour control room would be opened by his department at the Sabarimala hill shrine during the coming Mandalam-Makaravilakku festive season for the convenience of the Ayyappa devotees.

Talking to mediapersons here, he said all preparations had been completed for the functioning of the control room under an Assistant Forest Conservator and it would coordinate activities of all other departments at Sabarimala.

The control room would extend all facilities to the pilgrims and address to their grievances, besides checking the prices of commodities being sold at Sabarimala.

A two-day training had been given to 840 members of the Eco-development Committee on how to behave and respect the pilgrims, he added.

The department would also keep garbage bins at important places from Pamba to Sannidhanam for dumping waste and food left-overs.

Pointing out that garbage disposal was the main problem after the festival, Mr Viswam said a new project named ''closing protocol'' would be launched by coordinating all officials from various departments.

The Minister urged the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), which governs the Sabarimala temple, to begin activities to provide facilities to devotees five months ahead of the festival from next year.

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