The Kerala police on Sunday held BJP state spokesperson B Gopalakrishnan for defying the prohibitory orders under CrPC 144 and enter Sabarimala. Eight district-level leaders of the party were also detained for violating section 144, which is imposed in and around Sabarimala. Section 144 prohibits the assembly of four or more persons. However, according to the police, they were released on bail later.
"The nine were arrested at Nilakkal base camp for violating section 144," the police told TNM. The Nilakkal police had issued a notice to the BJP workers, which laid down the condition that the latter should climb down within six hours if they were allowed to go to the shrine. The cadres, however, refused to sign the notice.
Previously, on November 19, SP Yatish Chandra had made the controversial right-wing leader, KP Sasikala, sign a similar notice before he granted her the permission to visit Sabarimala for her grandsonâ€™s â€˜choroottuâ€™.
On Friday, the Pathanamthitta district administration extended the prohibitory order on Nilakkal, Pamba, Sannidhanam and Elavunkal till December 4.
The BJP, on Thursday, had declared that they were shifting the protest against women entry into Sabarimala from the temple premises to the Secretariat.
Meanwhile, an eight-member BJP delegation, led by MP and National General Secretary of the BJP Saroj Pandey, met Kerala Governor P Sathasivam and submitted a petition demanding the lifting of the prohibitory orders in and around Sabarimala.
The delegation also alleged that a number of false cases had been slapped on BJP state General Secretary K Surendran.
The Nair Service Society (NSS) on Sunday flayed the government saying that it is trying to create a divide in society based on caste when it failed to implement the Supreme Court verdict allowing women of all ages to enter Sabarimala.
"The government might not have expected the strong objection in implementing the SC verdict. As the government's attempts to implement the verdict have failed, it is now trying to create a division in the name of caste by attributing it to the dominance of the upper caste people," NSS General Secretary G Sukumaran Nair said in a statement.