Sabrimalai temple priests continue to block women's entry into temple
October 20, 2018
Kerala continues to be in the grip of a storm over the question of women's entry into the Sabrimalai temple.
More women devotees and journalists who went to the shrine were forced to turn back. Angry protestors are still gathered in the area and are attacking the police too. On Friday, more than a dozen priests sat at the shrine entrance forming a barricade to stop women from entering.
24-year-old Kavita Jakkal and 31-year-old Rehana Fatima from Kochi were denied entry on Friday. Kavita is a journalist from Hyderabad.
A few others, including New York Times reporter Suhasini Raj attempted to enter the temple with the help of Kerala Inspector General S Sreejith but were pelted with stones.
He later tweeted about what happened.
We had brought them till the temple premises. But the main priests refused to open the temple for them. While we were waiting, the priests informed us that they will close the temple if we attempt to take them inside. - S Sreejith, Inspector General, Kerala.
Section 144 was imposed in main areas of Sabarimalai. There is police deployment across the area to protect women from further harassment.
In spite of the Supreme Court lifting the age old ban on women between 10 to 50 years entering the temple, devotees and angry protestors have decided to take law into their hands. Most of the protestors belong to political parties and the police seem helpless to tackle them.