Thrissur Pooram: Home dept orders probe into complaints against police

A view of Kudamattam during Thrissur Pooram. Photo: PTI

Thiruvananthapuram: The home department has ordered a probe into the complaint against police for allegedly making unnecessary interventions to disrupt the Thrissur Pooram festivities. The department took the move hours after the Chief Minister assured a serious probe into the complaints while addressing the media in Kasaragod on Sunday. 

The home department has instructed the ADGP who is in charge of law and order in the state to carry out a probe and submit a report. The police force has come under fire in Thrissur for imposing curbs that adversly affected the smooth conduct of the Pooram. Though these restrictions triggered a political row, the state police chief ignored it without seeking a report into the allegations.

Thrissur Pooram on April 19 encountered issues due to the police's use of excessive force to control the festival crowd.  The Thiruvambady devaswom halted the festivities after police erected barricades during the ezhunallippu (procession) at the time of Madathil Varavu panchavadyam. Consequently, the percussion artists dispersed from the Vadakkunnatha temple, and the elephants, along with Pooram enthusiasts, followed suit. The Thiruvambady Devaswom protested by switching off the lights at Pooram panthal in Naduvilal junction, marking a historic first.

Additionally, the Paramekkavu temple's procession also confronted police barricades, leading to significant commotion. Only one elephant and a few fairgoers were allowed to pass. Entry to Thekkinkadu maidan, the venue of the festival was barred and pooram enthusiasts were manhandled. Musicians and elephants were halted during last night's procession due to barricades set up for the Pooram fireworks. With the Thiruvambady section calling off the Pooram, the fate of the fireworks also became uncertain.

For the first time in the history of the festival, the display of fireworks, one of the major attractions of the event, which was scheduled in the small hours, was held in broad daylight on Saturday, which turned out to be a disappointment to the festival buffs. While the firework display of Paramekkavu Devaswom was held after 7 am, the "vedikkettu" of Thiruvambady Devaswom, which was initially reluctant for the display, was started later in the day. 

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