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BDJS Irks BJP by Skipping Ayyappa Jyothi Programme in Kerala

Thousands of people lit "Ayyappa Jyothies" (lamps) across Kerala vowing to protect the rituals and traditions of the famous hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala.

Neethu Reghukumar | CNN-News18

Updated:December 27, 2018, 10:50 PM IST
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BDJS Irks BJP by Skipping Ayyappa Jyothi Programme in Kerala
People seen participating in Ayyappa jyothi programme in Kerala.
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Thiruvananthapuram: In a move that may not sit very well with the BJP in Kerala, BDJS president Thushar Vellappally and many of the senior party leaders did not attend the ‘Ayyappa jyothi’ organised by the Sabarimala Karma Samithi.

The programme, which the BJP had pledged its support to, was to protect the rituals and traditions of the famous hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala. The BDJS is the second largest party in Kerala NDA.

Explaining his party’s absence at the Ayyappa Jyothi event, Thushar said that it was not an NDA programme.

Playing down the controversy, BJP state president PS Sreedharan Pillai said that it was up to the individual in each party to attend any programme.

The BDJS and the BJP has together held a Radha Yathra last month in connection with the Sabarimala issue.

However, in a move that is sure to raise eyebrows, Thushar expressed the desire to take part in the LDF government's proposal for a "women’s wall" across the state on January 1.

“I really wish to take part in Women’s wall. But on first January, I will be in Shivagiri attending a meeting. If women’s wall is there, then I will attend,” said Thushar.

The women’s wall CPI(M)-led LDF government’s attempt to protect renaissance values and garner support for the government's decision to implement the Supreme Court verdict allowing women of all age groups to offer prayers at the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa.

The Sabarimala shrine had witnessed protests over the government's decision to implement the Supreme court verdict allowing women of menstrual age to offer prayers.

Over 20 young women had unsuccessfully tried to reach hill shrine and offer prayers, but had to return following protests by devotees.





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