Over 4 crore pilgrims visited Sabarimalatext_fields
Thiruvananthapuram: Over four crore pilgrims from across the country offered worship at the famed Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala during the last festival season, Minister for Devaswom, Kadakampally Surendran told Assembly Tuesday.
The shrine, situated atop holly hill Sabarimala in Western Ghats, is one of the major pilgrim centres in south India and a master-plan for improving the facilities there is being implemented effectively, he said during the question hour.
"State government is implementing various schemes under the master-plan with the support of the Centre. The master-plan would cover schemes for conservation of both forest and animals," he said.
The Minister assured all support to protect the interests of 'Mala Arayas', a tribal sect who claimed to have the right to light the holy lamp at Ponnambalamedu on Makaravilakku Day during the annual pilgrimage season in Sabarimala.
The CPI(M)-led LDF government would take all necessary steps to protect the rights of tribals, who were dwelling in and around the hills in Sabarimala region and restore their right to light the holy lamp, he said, adding "Government is of the opinion that tribals should do the work they have been entitled."
We will take necessary steps for this, he said.