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Inflow of pilgrims yet to pick up at the Sabarimala Temple

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Sabarimala, Nov 22: The number of pilgrim has been decreasing at Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. the restrictions imposed by the police on the pilgrim movement at the Valiya Nadapandal, where pilgrims used to rest earlier, continued on Wednesday too.

The hill shrine was opened on November 16 evening for the over two-month-long pilgrimage season amid heavy security and protests.

On the fifth day of the annual pilgrim season on Wednesday, Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan and Kerala police were engaged in brief war of words.

Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan, on his way to the Sabarimala Temple, argued with the police in Nilackal over restrictions on private vehicles heading to Pamba, the last entry point to the Lord Ayyappa shrine. Though IPS officer Yatish Chandra said the minister could travel in his official vehicle, the minister preferred to proceed to Pamba from here in a state-run KSRTC bus as a mark of protest against the restrictions imposed by state authorities causing difficulties to pilgrims.

Ayyappa shrine

Ayyappa shrine

A policeman helps a girl to climb up the 18 sacred steps to offer prayers at the Lord Ayyappa shrine, in Sabarimala, Wednesday, Nov 21, 2018. (PTI Photo)

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Policemen help devotees

Policemen help devotees

Policemen helps the devotees to climb up the 18 sacred steps for offering prayers at the Lord Ayyappa shrine, in Sabarimala, Wednesday, Nov 21, 2018. (PTI Photo)

Pon Radhakrishnan at Pamba

Pon Radhakrishnan at Pamba

Union Minister of State for Shipping Pon Radhakrishnan at Pamba, the last entry point to the Lord Ayyappa shrine, on Wednesday, Nov 21, 2018. (PTI Photo)

Ayyappa Temple

Ayyappa Temple

Police personnel stand guard at Lord Ayyappa Temple, in Sabarimala, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. (PTI Photo)

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