Pamba: A group of 10 women, reportedly from Andhra Pradesh, were sent back from Pamba, the nearest point to Sabarimala temple. According to the Kerala police, the women were not carrying ‘irumudi’ (offering to the god) which is mandatory.
The famous hill shrine opened on November 16 for a two-month-long pilgrim season. Thousands of devotee of Lord Ayappa thronged the temple in the evening for the Mandala Pooja.
According to reports, the women from AP were stopped by the police. They were counselled and asked to go back. The group did not object to the police action, they said.
‘Irumudi’ consists of honey, sweets, betel nut, ghee and a few more items. The offering covered in black cloth is carried by every devotee since the time they begin their journey. The devotes are not supposed to keep the offering on the ground but carry it in their lap or head.
On Saturday, pilgrims started arriving at Nilakkal and Pamba as early as 5 am. They were allowed into the shrine only after 2 pm. Amid tight security, the pilgrims were allowed to climb the 18 holy steps after the Padi Pooja to have a darshan of Lord.