30 Arrested For Protesting Against Entry Of Women In Sabarimala Temple, 2 Journalists Attacked

| October 17 , 2018 , 14:42 IST

A total of 30 people have been arrested, 9 on Tuesday and 21 on Wednesday for protesting against the entry of women between the ages of 10-50 years to the Sabarimala temple in Kerala, which had been allowed by a ruling of the Supreme Court.

As the temple opened on Wednesday amidst heavy security and protests, 2 women reporters, one from The News Minute and one from Republic TV, were attacked by anti-women protesters.

Apart from the arrests, 50 others were taken into custody Pathanamthitta district for protesting against the entry of women to the Sabarimala temple. Several women groups were also a part of the protesters, which included members of the Congress, BJP, Shiv Sena, temple board and tribal groups.

Chief of the forest dwellers VK Narayanan said that the restriction on women of a certain age group entering the temple was a custom that should not be violated.

"Lord Ayyappa is our God. Restrictions imposed on women of a certain age group from entering the shrine is part of our custom. Following the custom is very important for worshipping at the Lord Ayyappa temple situated in the dense forests. It should not be violated,” he said.

Security was boosted around the Sabarimala Temple and its base camp in Kerala as it opened its doors for devotees on Wednesday, for the first time since the Supreme Court ruled that women between the ages of 10-50 years can enter the temple, from which they were earlier barred.

ALSO READ: Supreme Court Allows Entry Of Women Of All Ages In Kerala's Sabarimala Temple

A total of 1,000 security personnel, including 800 men and 200 women have been deployed at the  Nillekal and Pampa base while another 500 security have been deployed at Sannidhanam, where the temple is located.

The Sabarimala temple, dedicated to Lord Ayyappa, traditionally barred the entry of women of menstruating age, but the practice was challenged in the Supreme Court. The apex court on September 28 ruled that women of all age groups should be allowed to enter the Sabarimala temple, sparking protests in Kerala from political parties, Hindu outfits, temple priests and general public men as well as women.