Pamba river | Representational Image: Akhil ES/ Mathrubhumi
Sabarimala: The high footfall in Sabarimala leaves no space for the pilgrims to rest or keep belongings safely in Pamba. Before heading to sannidanam, the pilgrims have to take a holy dip in Pamba after placing their ‘Irumudi Kettu’ and other possessions in a safe and clean place.
The centres made for this purpose had been ruined in the floods of 2018. Though the authorities promised to rebuild them several times, no action was taken. Currently, only one temporary centre made of sheets has been set up to keep the belongings of pilgrims safe. Here, Rs 20 is charged from a person.
Several devotees complained that the staff demanded extra charges to keep the belongings for a few minutes. The pilgrims from other states are being exploited more. An extra charge of Rs 10 has to be paid for getting a mat for rent, which will be paid back after returning the mat. Often the staff refuse to pay back this amount even after returning the mat, said devotees.