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Newly Installed Golden Mast at Sabarimala Damaged, 5 Detained

Five people from Andhra Pradesh were detained on Sunday after a newly installed golden flag mast at the Lord Ayyappa Sabarimala Temple was found damaged just after the inauguration.

Neethu Reghukumar | CNN-News18

Updated:June 25, 2017, 6:34 PM IST
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Newly Installed Golden Mast at Sabarimala Damaged, 5 Detained
File photo of Sabarimala temple in Kerala
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Thiruvananthapuram: Five people from Andhra Pradesh were detained on Sunday after a newly installed golden flag mast at the Lord Ayyappa Sabarimala Temple was found damaged just after the inauguration.

According to the police, CCTV footage showed that a cloth dipped in a chemical was thrown at the base of the 12-metre tall mast, causing damage to it. Police suspect that the chemical used was mercury. A forensic examination of the cloth is being done.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said forensic experts are at Sabarimala to investigate damage done to the newly installed golden flag mast. He said that the culprits won’t be spared.

The ceremonial installation of the Rs 3.2-crore flag mast was held on Sunday between 11:50 am and 1:30 pm. Devaswom minister Kadakampally Surendran said that the damage could have been intentional, but it can be easily rectified.

The 12-metre teakwood stem of the temple mast has been covered with gold-covered cylindrical copper drums. A large number of devotees from different parts of South India were camping at Sabarimala to witness the event.
| Edited by: Puja Menon
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