HC slams Rs 25,000 fine on Shobha Surendran, withdraws plea against cops at Sabarimala

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KOCHI: Kerala High court has criticised Bharatiya Janata Party leader Shobha Surendran and slammed a fine of Rs 25,000, for raising unnecessary allegations on the Sabarimala issue and wasting the court's time. 

 

Earlier, she had approached the HC against the deployment of police at Sabarimala as it witnessed violent protests after the Supreme Court verdict which allowed women of all age groups to enter the hill shrine.

The court rejected her petition and imposed a fine of Rs 25,000 for misusing its time.

"Unbefitting allegations were raised in the court and the petition was useless. Don’t use the court for cheap publicity," the court said.

Though Shobha's advocate said that they were withdrawing the plea, the court instructed that the petitioner must pay the fine and hand over the amount to the Legal Service Authority. The court added that the action was a reminder for everyone.

The Kerala Police is playing a crucial role for the smooth running of Sabarimala Festival.

Over 15,000 personnel, including women police personnel and 860 women civil police officers have deployed during the season.

The major services rendered by Kerala police at Sabarimala are, ensuring safety and security of Sabarimala and pilgrims, providing facilities for good darshan by proper crowd control, maintaining smooth traffic system, managing an efficient vehicle parking system, providing security for ‘Thanka Anki Thiruvabharanam’ procession, providing ambulance service, ensuring effective disaster management , maintaining law and order, preventing the occurrence of crimes.

The Kerala cops have imposed Section 144 in Nilakkal, Pamba and Sannidhanam as a precautionary measure.

The section of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), which prohibits assembly of more than four people at a place has been put in place, as the state braces for a bout of fresh protests against the entry of women into the hill shrine.

The temple opened for annual pilgrimage season on November 16, as a fierce standoff continued between the state government and protesters over the entry of menstruating women to the temple, allowed by the apex court’s September 28 verdict.

On September 28, the five-judge bench headed by former Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra lifted the entry ban on women in the temple, saying the centuries-old custom at the shrine was not an essential religious practice and “the attribute of devotion to divinity cannot be subjected to the rigidity and stereotypes of gender”.

 

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