First phase of Sabarimala Master plan in a year

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Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 10 (PTI) Kerala Governmenttoday announced that the first phase of the Sabarimala MasterPlan would be implemented within a year to prevent tragedieslike the deadly Pullumedu stampede.

The works under the plan would be implemented byavailing Rs 50 crore as loan and Rs 25 crore to be mobilisedthrough sponsorship, the state budget for 2011-12 presented inthe assembly by Finance Minister T M Thomas Isaac said.

A budgetary provision of Rs 25 crore was made for theproject.

The works, to be executed under the project, wouldinclude development of parking bay at the base camp Nilakkal,where 1500 vehicles could be parked at a time, an emergencyambulance road at Pampa and a flyover at the rear side of thetemple for devotees to come down after offering worship.

The worst-ever tragedy to strike the Sabarimalapilgrimage had occurred on January 14 when devotees hadgathered in large numbers to witness the ''Makarajyothi'',considered by the devout as a celestial light that fleetinglyappears at dusk, marking the culmination of the two-month''Makaravilakku'' season from mid-November.

102 Ayappa pilgrims were killed in the tragedy.

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