India: Heavy rush of pilgrims in Sabarimala, 2 women sent back

Sabarimala (Ker), Nov 18 (PTI) Amid heavy rush of devotees to the Lord Ayyappa temple here, police on Monday sent back two women devotees from Andhra Pradesh at Pamba as they were in the 'barred' 10-50 age group.

On Saturday, 10 women were turned back at Pamba, 5 km from the shrine, when the temple opened for the annual Mandala-Makaravilakku puja.

India: Sabarimala temple opens, 10 women sent back by police

Sabarimala, Nov 16 (PTI) Amid tight security, thousands of devotees offered prayers at the Lord Ayyappa temple when it opened for the annual Mandala-Makaravilakku puja on Saturday, though police said 10 women were sent back from Pamba base as they were in the "barred" age group.

The temple has reopened just days after a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court referred to a larger bench the matter related to entry of women into the hill temple and other issues related to various faiths.

India: Over 10,000 police to be deployed in Sabarimala

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 12 (PTI): Over 10,000 police personnel will be posted in phases in and around Sabarimala Lord Ayyappa temple for security during the two-month long pilgrimage season starting November 17.

During the Mandala Makkarvillakku festival, 10,017 police personnel will be posted around the temple complex in five phases, a police press release said.

DGP Loknath Behara said there will be stringent security in and around Sabarimala during the pilgrimage season this year.

India: No bail for two students arrested under UAPA for distributing pamphlets

Kozhikode (Ker), Nov 6 (PTI) A court here on Wednesday dismissed the bail applications of two CPI(M) student activists, who were arrested under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) for allegedly distributing pro-Maoist pamphlets.

Thaha Fazal and Allan Shuhaib, who are students of Journalism and Law respectively and CPI(M)'s branch committee members, were arrested on November 2 from here, causing widespread criticism in the Left-ruled state.

India: Teenage girl sexually abused for 2 years by five men

Kottayam, Oct 28 (PTI) A 13-year-old girl was sexually assaulted for the past two years by five men, four of whom have been arrested, police said here on Monday.

Those nabbed in connection with the case have been identified as Devasia, Reji, Joby and Nagappan.

Another person, Benny, is absconding, they said.

The matter came to light when the traumatised girl was taken for counselling by her relatives.

Cases have been registered under theProtection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

India: Police kills 3 Maoists in an alleged encounter in Kerala

Palakkad, Oct 28 (PTI) Three suspected Maoists, including a woman, were killed on Monday near Attapady in Palakkad district during combing operations, police said.

A top police official told PTI that personnel of the Thunderbolt squad retaliated when shots were fired at them.

"The patrolling team was combing the deep forest area in Palakkad district. It was then the Maoists fired at them.

Dutch King, Queen to visit Kerala (India) on Oct 17, 18

Kochi, Oct 13 (PTI) King of The Netherlands Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima will arrive here on October 17 on a two-day visit, official sources said.

The Dutch Royals, who will be in the country on a five-day visit from Sunday, would arrive at the international airport here from Mumbai by a special flight at 1 p.m on October 17, the sources said.

Upon their arrival, they will visit Mattancherry palace and Dutch company Ned Spice.

India: Congress demands Kerala CM's resignation

Thiruvananthapuram, Sept 30 (PTI) The Congress in Kerala on Monday demanded immediate resignation of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan after the Kerala High court ordered a CBI probe into the killing of two youth congress workers allegedly by CPI (M) activists in Kasaragod in Febuary this year.

Alleging that the LDF government had taken all steps to help the accused, Leader of the opposition in the state assembly Ramesh Chennithala said the chief minister should resign following the high court ordering CBI probe in the case.

India: Ruling LDF wins Pala bypoll in Kerala

Kottayam (Ker), Sept 27; GANASHAKTI: The ruling CPI(M)-led LDF in Kerala on Friday won the by-election to Pala assembly constituency, wresting the seat from the opposition Congress led UDF.

LDF candidate Mani C Kappen defeated Jose Tom Pulikkunnel of the opposition Congress-led UDF in a closely contested  fight.

Kappen, leader of the Nationalist Congress Party, defeated Pulikkunnel, a faction leader of the Kerala Congress (M) by 2,943 votes.

India: Police take control of church, evict Jacobite priests

Kochi, Sep 26 (PTI) Amid dramatic scenes, police made a forced entry into a church here, caught in a row between two factions, and removed protesting rival Jacobite priests and followers following a Kerala High Court directive on Thursday.

The Orthodox and Jacobite factions have been caught in a tussle over the possession of the church, known as Piravom Valiyapalli, and matters only worsened after the Supreme Court ordered that the control of the place of worship be given to the Orthodox group.

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