National

Sabarimala protests: Kerala High Court grants bail to BJP leader Surendran

BJP General Secretary K Surendran was granted conditional bail by the Kerala High Court on Friday, in a case related to alleged attack on a 52-year old woman pilgrim by frenzied Lord Ayyappa devotees at the Sabarimala Temple on November 6. Justice V Raja Vijayaraghavan directed Surendran to surrender his passport, not to enter the Pathanamthitta District, in which the Lord Ayyappa temple is located, till the charge sheet in the case is filed and furnish a bail bond of Rs two lakh.If released on bail, Surendran would attempt to incite violence at the hill shrine, the state government had said as it strongly opposed the relief during the hearing. This is the second case related to the Sabarimala protests in which the BJP leader had been granted bail.

Initially on November 17, he was arrested from Nilackal, base camp, while on way to the Sabarimala Temple after he had attempted to defy prohibitory orders and refused to go back despite a request from the police.
A Pathanamthitta court had granted bail to Surendran in the case on November 21. He however, remained in prison till date as he was also booked in the case related to the alleged attack on the woman pilgrim.During a special puja on November 6, devotees had allegedly blocked and attacked the woman pilgrim who had come to the Sannidhanam for the 'choorunu' (rice feeding ceremony) of her grandchild, on suspicion of being in the 'barred' age group of 10-50.Sabarimala had witnessed violent protests by a section of devotees against the state government's decision to implement the September 28 order of the Supreme Court, allowing entry of women of all age groups into the shrine.

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