Ban on display of religious motifs on buses sparks ire
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Last Updated: Tuesday, October 26, 2010, 15:35
Thiruvananthapuram: A ban on display of religious motifs on state-operated special bus services to pilgrim centres has sparked strong protests from organisations alleging that this move was targeted against the Sabarimala pilgrimage that begins next month.

What has angered the outfits, including Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) is a specific direction in a circular saying words like "Swami Saranam" and "Amme Narayana" should not be displayed on buses to pilgrim centres.

The order, circulated to all Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) units across the state, has asked unit heads to stop the practice of displaying "religious verses, emblems or flags" on the special services.

Kummanam Rajasekharan, state general secretary, VHP alleged that the order was directed against the Sabarimala pilgrimage which begins next month.

"It has been a long standing practice to display pictures of Lord Ayyappa and also stickers on special services operated to the shrine's base camp Pampa. This helps millions of pilgrims from other states to immediately spot buses bound for Sabarimala", he said.

On the controversy, a top KSRTC official said that the government was seized of the matter and a decision was expected to be announced, factoring in sentiments expressed in various quarters.


First Published: Tuesday, October 26, 2010, 15:35

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