Three detained for damaging gold-coated mast at Sabarimala temple | kerala | Hindustan Times
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Three detained for damaging gold-coated mast at Sabarimala temple

The incident came to light after the mast-installation ceremony, when officials found that the gold coating on the mast had suddenly changed colour.

kerala Updated: Jun 25, 2017 18:39 IST
Ramesh Babu
Devotees queue up during a pilgrimage at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala.
Devotees queue up during a pilgrimage at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala. (AP File photo)

Three people were detained for allegedly damaging a gold-coated mast at the Sabarimala temple by splashing it with mercury on Sunday.

The incident came to light after the mast-installation ceremony, when officials found that the gold coating on the mast had suddenly changed colour. Footage gathered from a CCTV camera installed in the vicinity showed three people approaching the structure around 2.30 pm, and throwing a viscous substance at it.

The state government has ordered a high-level probe into the incident. “It seems like some people have deliberately done this to create mischief. We will not spare them,” said state temple affairs minister Kadakampally Surendran.

The Travancore Devasom Board, which manages the affairs of the temple, said the mast has suffered serious damage. It has already filed a police complaint.

The 12-metre-long chiselled teakwood mast was prepared by immersing it in medicated oil for over a year, after which hundreds of devotees carried it on their shoulders to the Sabarimala temple on May 22. It was later coated in copper and gold.

The mast is being installed amid a 10-day function at the temple.