Special Correspondent

KURNOOL: Superintendent of Police Ch. Srikanth appealed to devotees at Malamalleswara Swamy temple at Devaragattu near Aluru to celebrate the festival on Dasara day in a peaceful atmosphere.

In a statement, he said if devotees discarded clubs and liquor consumption, much of the violence could be avoided.

As a tradition, devotees carried clubs in ancient times when the forest was infested with wild animals and they needed weapons to protect themselves. However, the journey was no longer hazardous now. Hundreds of people were injured in the melee when the devotees sporting clubs wielded them in frenzy. He urged the women to ensure men participating in the temple festivity did not consume liquor. The police had attended to hundreds of devotees with head injuries immediately after the festival. He said the Police Department would take all possible steps to conduct the festival in a peacefully and sought the cooperation of public.