Even as the ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in Kerala continues to hold its ground regarding its stand on the Sabarimala issue, the Opposition UDF and BJP in the state are intensifying their protests against the government.
In a fresh round of agitations that began in the state capital Thiruvananthapuram on Monday, members of both the BJP and UDF started a hunger strike and satyagraha demanding the withdrawal of restrictions put in place in Sabarimala.
While the withdrawal of Section 144 in Sabarimala is the common demand put forward by both the parties, the BJP and UDF have also come up with their individual list of demands.
Members of the UDF who are continuing with their indefinite Satyagraha outside the Assembly hall on Wednesday, also want improvement of facilities in Pamba, Nilakkal and Sabarimala. The UDF MLAs who began an indefinite hunger strike are VS Sivakumar of Congress, Parakkal Abdullah of IUML and N Jayaraj of Kerala Congress (M).
Earlier on Monday, the assembly proceedings were disrupted for the fourth consecutive day following uproar over the Sabarimala issue, because of which the dayâ€™s sitting lasted for just 21 minutes. It was following this disruption of the assembly session, that the three UDF MLAs began their Satyagraha.
Speaking to TNM, a source close to Kerala Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said that the UDF members have been cooperating with the Speaker during the Assembly sessions but the Satyagraha of the three MLAs will continue outside the assembly hall till their demands are met.
Even as the Satyagraha continues, Section 144 in Sabarimala was extended on Tuesday till the night of December 8.
At the same time, members of the BJP under the leadership of state General Secretary AN Radhakrishnan who are protesting outside the Kerala Secretariat, are also demanding strict action against the police for allegedly foisting a false case on K Surendran.
The protest by the BJP which will go on for two weeks will see party members from each of the 14 districts coming to the Secretariat.