Nalin Kumar Kateel wades into Sabarimala’s troubled waters

Mangaluru: Dakshina Kannada MP, Nalin Kumar Kateel, who visited Sabarimala on Tuesday to study the situation in the temple town following the controversy over the entry of women below 50 into its famous shrine, says he plans to submit his report to the BJP's central leadership in a few days.

Mr Kateel, who is in- charge of the BJP's affairs in Kerala, was accompanied by Rajya Sabha MP from Kerala, V Muraleedharan and  Dakshina Kannada BJP leaders.

Blaming the Kerala government for the Emergency-like situation in Sabarimala, he rued that devotees were not able to chant, 'Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa,' loudly and vehicles were stopped at certain points and devotees transferred to KSRTC buses to reach the temple. "The number of devotees going to Sabarimala has dropped as a result. As against 10,000 police, there were only 2000 devotees in the town on Tuesday, " he said , speaking to the Deccan Chronicle. 

"We have studied the situation there and will submit the report to the leadership. I will also raise this issue in the Lok Sabha," he declared.

However Congress leaders alleged Mr Kateel's visit to Sabarimala was  part of BJP  national president, Amit Shah's "script" to win a couple of seats in Kerala.

"Last week Amit Shah attended the RSS bhaitak in Mangaluru, where he planned the BJP's strategy on the Sabarimala issue.  They are trying their best to cash in on it for the elections not only in Kerala , but also in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, which have a large number of Lord Ayyappa devotees," claimed Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) general secretary, P V Mohan. 

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