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Thiruvananthapuram – CPI(M) converts historical Hindu Temples for political campaign, sparks controversy

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Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. The CPI(M) has converted the historically significant Hindu temples, Saraswati Mandapam and Navarathri Mandapam in Poojappura, into their political campaign platform. This move entailed converting the Saraswati Mandapam into the organizing committee office for the ‘Nava Kerala Sadhas’ program, despite opposition from devotees and local residents.

Amid opposition from devotees, CPI(M) activists issued threats. Local residents further allege that a senior CPI(M) leader and his group involved in this office arrangements.

This action by the CPI(M) took place despite the Devaswom Board’s prohibition order on hoisting flags or holding political meetings near temples.

One of the local residents said that this intrusion was supported by the Kerala government. During the Saraswati Pooja ceremony, the Mandapam is considered a holy place by devotees, where worship and devotional music performances take place.

Traditionally, the Mandapam is used for Ayyappa pooja during the Mandalam-Makaravilakku pilgrim season. The local residents stated that the Mandapam and Temple were constructed by Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma, who ruled Travancore.

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