Two more women sent back from Sabarimala shrine; LDF government remains defensive

Two 40-year-olds, Kanaka Durga and Bindu Hariharan, were the latest to drop their trekking plans on Monday morning after the situation went out of control.

Published: 24th December 2018 09:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th December 2018 04:47 AM   |  A+A-

Sabarimala-Women

Police taking a middle-aged woman devotee back to Pampa after protest by Sabarimala pilgrims | Shaji Vettipu ram

By Express News Service

SABARIMALA: The LDF Government has always been insisting that it will enforce the Supreme Court verdict allowing women of all ages to enter the Sabarimala temple, but it finds itself constantly on the back foot as police keep sending young women back due to protests from devotees, particularly at the Nilakkal base camp and Pampa.

Two 40-year-olds, Kanaka Durga and Bindu Hariharan, were the latest to drop their trekking plans on Monday morning after the situation went out of control. The exhausted duo was taken to the Government Medical College at Kottayam but the protesters, under the aegis of Sangh Parivar, did not give them any respite, hurling rotten eggs at them on the hospital premises. Six persons were arrested in connection with the incident.

Weary of the gruelling trek, Kanakadurga had fainted on the way. The cops took her to a nearby hospital. They also forced Bindu to move away from the trekking path. But when she insisted on continuing her journey to the temple, the police forcefully removed her, according to sources.

"The Supreme Court order must be enforced and hope, police will provide us security," Bindu told media while on the way to Sabarimala.

On Sunday, the Sabarimala foothills had witnessed high drama as hundreds of devotees blocked paths and chased away a group of 11 women of menstruating age being escorted to the hill shrine by police.

Police arresting RSS workers for hurling rotten eggs at Bindu and Kanaka Durga on the Kottayam Medical College Hospital campus on Monday | Express

The bid of the 11 women, who were members of a Chennai-based women empowerment outfit, ' Manithi ', to reach the shrine to offer prayers was unsuccessful on Sunday as they were forced to return by protesting devotees.

Kerala had witnessed massive protests by devotees and the BJP opposing the apex court verdict of September 28 permitting women of all age groups into the shrine.

Thousands of devotees have gathered at the foothills of the shrine as the first phase of the annual pilgrimage season to Sabarimala comes to an end in the next three days.

The trek to Sabarimala starts from Pamba, which is around four kms from the hilltop shrine.

The first phase of the 41-day long annual pilgrim season at the Lord Ayyappa temple would culminate on December 27 with the puja.

Over a dozen women, including a journalist and an activist of menstruating age, had also earlier tried to trek to the shrine, nestled in the Western Ghats forests, but could not make it due to protests by devotees and right-wing activists.

The Kerala High Court earlier this month had appointed a three-member committee, vesting them with powers to oversee law and order and other problems faced by pilgrims during the ongoing annual season.

(With PTI inputs)

Stay up to date on all the latest Kerala news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments(3)

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

  • Dr. Anisetti Thammayya

    These women are witches who are supported by the government. Do we need this type of government and Supreme courts who are responsible for all these disturbances in Sabarimala?
    4 months ago reply
  • Satya

    Pl don't disturb the sanctity of the place
    4 months ago reply
  • Mohan

    These are mot devotees they are Activists. Some are even have connection to Maoists
    4 months ago reply
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp