Sabarimala protest: Man sets himself on fire outside Kerala Secretariat

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Dec 13, 2018, 12:34 PM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )

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The victim has been identified as Venugopalan Nair and is said to be an Ayyapa devotee.

A 49-year-old man set himself ablaze on Thursday outside Kerala government Secretariat in Palayam area of the city.

The victim has been identified as Venugopalan Nair and is said to be an Ayyapa devotee.

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According to a report by ANI, Nair covered himself in some flammable liquid and then set himself on fire outside the Secretariat.

He was immediately rushed to the nearby Trivandrum Medical College Hospital for the treatment. Nair is said to be in a critical state and is under observation in the Intense Care Unit.

The incident took place at around 1:30 am in the morning near the BJP's venue of protest against restrictions on women's entry into Sabarimala temple.

Police are yet to ascertain the reason behind the victim's extreme step.

BJP meanwhile has alleged that Nair was Lord Ayyappa's devotee and was upset because of the ongoing row over the ban on women of a particular age entering Sabarimala temple.

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BJP's state unit president, P Sreedharan Pillai had on Friday had announced a protest outside Kerala Secretariat over Sabarimala temple issue. The protest which will continue for 14 days is expected to see the party members from each of 14 districts coming to Thiruvananthapuram to protest each day.

Some of the demands of the BJP include lifting the ban on the restrictions over the movement of female devotees in Sabarimala temple and stringent action against the police officials for allegedly filing a false case against K Surendran, the party's general secretary.

A string of protests has been witnessed in the state after the Supreme Court's verdict of allowing women of all age groups to enter the Lord Ayappa shrine. 
Female devotees in the age bracket of 10 to 50 years have not yet succeeded in offering prayer at the shrine even after the Apex Court's decision.

(With inputs from news agencies)

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