Kerala Festival Coordination Committee is planning a protest march, fearing that the Government may ban temple festival celebrations. Organisers and festival enthusiasts are planning to march to the Thrissur District Collectorate on 15 February.
Valsan Chembakkara, General Secretary, Kerala Festival Coordination Committee confirmed the same. “Ministers have previously convened to remove unnecessary restrictions and iron out measures and protocol to conduct festivals in a smooth manner. Even then, there hasn’t been an absolute solution,” he says. “All the mandates stated by the Forest Department in Kerala Captive Elephant (Management & Maintenance) Rules 2012 circular are being followed. Then, why shouldn’t festivals be allowed to continue,” he asks.
As for vedikettu or fireworks at festivals, local firecrackers like kizhiminu, amitti and ola padakkam aren’t allowed. And to burst Chinese fire crackers, one needs to get permission. “There needs to be a clear explanation with regards to this. It is the responsibility of the officers in charge to bring clarity to the matter,” Valsan Chembakkara says.