Similar protests at various places in and around the temple town on Wednesday forced a 45-year-old woman from Andhra Pradesh and her family to abandon their trip to the Ayyappa temple. The court agreed with Indian feminists that the blanket ban was discriminatory and unconstitutional. We can't say if they are actual devotees.
Nilakkal/Pamba: Kerala's Sabarimala temple opened its doors to women of all ages this evening after much protest, violence and the final imposition of prohibitory orders that bans large gatherings. He said police have also filed cases against those who attacked the journalists. They were outraged by the Sabarimala temple chief's statement that he would allow women to enter only after a machine was invented to detect if they were "pure" - meaning that they weren't menstruating. Several review pleas have been filed in the Supreme Court, which has ruled that divinity and devotion can not be subjected to the rigidity and stereotypes of gender. We saw another reporter's vehicle had been smashed.
TNM reporter Saritha S Balan was in a bus with other journalists when 20 people surrounded the vehicle and made her get down. A young woman from Kerala's Alappuzha, identified as Liby, was stopped at the Pathanamthitta bus terminal.
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Koshy said she was "appalled" by that line of reasoning.
Many fanatics had even threatened to commit "mass suicides" if women entered the temple. "There is no question of gender here", she said in a post for NDTV. There was a heavy turnout of protesters who came in small prayer groups and assembled in front of the Mahadevar temple.
Surendran, who reviewed the situation and preparations for the three-month-long Mandalam-Makaravilakku-festival beginning November 17 at Sannidhanam (Sabarimala temple complex), said the government would tackle the agitation politically.
"We don't mind not being allowed in".
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Groups of women devotees including senior citizens, clad in traditional sarees, had stopped each and every vehicle at Nilackal Tuesday. "This is just a very old custom the supreme court should not have interfered with".
The protesting group of devotees had been staging a sit-in chanting Ayyappa mantra in the shelter in protest against the Supreme Court order permitting women of all age groups to enter the shrine.
The National Commission for Women and the Network of Women in Media took cognisance of the attack on women journalists while covering the events on Wednesday, the day the gates of the Sabarimala temple are scheduled to open. Several policemen have been deployed at the temple to control the mobs who are determined to stop any woman from entering the temple as tradition bars women's entry.
The woman, Madhavi, accompanied by her parents and children began the climb leading to the hilltop temple hours ahead of its opening for the monthly rituals.
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He claimed to have the support of several "scientists" that concurred with the view that the "positive energy" in a temple can be polluted by the entry of menstruating women. However, angry protesters were unrelenting.