An angry mob protesting against the entry of women into Kerala’s Sabarimala temple went violent and attacked The News Minute’s reporter Saritha S Balan in Pamba, and Republic TV’s south India bureau chief Pooja Prasanna in Nilakkal, while the two were covering protest.
Despite police protection present at the spot, Republic TV’s reporter Pooja was attacked by an over 100-strong mob of men, some of whom were masked, while the TV crew was on its way to the Pamba base camp. The incident took place in the town of Nilakkal located in Pathanamthitta district where the famed Sabarimala Temple on Wednesday, was set to open its doors to all women devotees for the first time.
Visuals of the attack, put out by the news channel , show the mob surrounding the car, shoving their faces into every window and the windshield, shouting loudly, making intimidatory gestures, and then, slamming the car from all sides.
Similarly, Saritha S Balan, a reporter associated with The News Minute, was attacked in Pamba on Wednesday morning.
Reportedly, Saritha was on a bus that was full of Sabarimala devotees when a mob of 20 men surrounded the bus and tried to get her out. Saritha was intimidated by the mob and violently physically attacked and verbally abused. As the police tried to give a protective ring to Saritha to get her out of the bus, the mob physically attacked her, and one of them in fact kicked her on her spine.