Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government has decided that 1,680 CPI(M) workers will be appointed at Sabarimala during the pilgrimage season in November, in the aftermath of the Supreme Court verdict allowing women of all ages to enter the Sabarimala temple. 

There are also reports that the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) that manages the shrine has been instructed to recruit only CPI(M) supporters to work on daily wages during the season.

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According to reports, 1,650 people will be appointed at Sannidhanam and 30 people at Nilakkal. They will be appointed on the basis of a daily wage. Devotees feel, however, that the government is trying to take complete control of the temple through this action.

Earlier, 1,500 people were appointed yearly at Sannidhanam for various jobs such as aravana (prasad) preparation, annadanam (meals), water distribution, office-guest house maintenance and so on. They are also responsible for providing food for security officers working at Kunnar dam, close to Sabarimala. The government has directed to appoint CPI(M) members for these tasks this year.

The workers will be allowed to stay at Sannidhanam until the end of this pilgrimage season. The board will be responsible for providing accommodation and food for these workers. The government has so far not been able to implement the Supreme Court verdict in connection with women's entry. Supreme Court had said that on November 13, it would hear review petitions challenging its verdict.