The Kerala High Court on Monday observed that Sabarimala is open for all people regardless of their religion while hearing the petition of BJP’s Intellectual Cell state convener TG Mohandas, who sought a ban on the entry of non-Hindus from entering the Sabarimala temple. The petition sought a court declaration which would state that permitting the entry of non-Hindu women and non-idol worshippers into Sannidhanam violated Rule 3 of the Kerala Places of Places of Public Worship (Authorization of Entry) Act, 1965, in accordance with the Supreme Court’s ruling only allowed which allowed Hindu women to enter the shrine. He further prayed for an independent investigation into the alleged attempt by police to permit “non-idol-worshippers” and non-Hindu women to enter the shrine.
The petition was heard by a Division Bench comprising Justice PR Ramachandra Menon and Justice Devan Ramachandran, who observed that the Sabarimala temple is for everyone, further noting that people of many faiths possess a right over its rituals and traditions. Those who do not follow certain traditions, like the irumudikettu (a bag of holy offerings carried on the head of a devotee), were also allowed to enter the temple. The reasoning for this was that the irumudikettu was a requirement only to climb the pathinetampadi (the 18 stairs), with those who were not following the tradition, possibly non-Hindus, could use another entrance door situated directly opposite to the steps. This practice was already in practice, the court noted.
The court also noted that the Sabarimala temple was a place that held the spirit of Vavar, a figure with great religious significance to Muslims. The matter is posted for hearing in two weeks, with the court seeking the opinion of the state and Travancore Devaswom Board on the matter. The petition is presumably due to model-turned-activist Rehana Fathima being accompanied by the Kerala police up to the shrine after the Supreme Court allowed women of all ages to enter the temple, which put an end to a ban on women between the ages of 10 to 50 years from entering the temple.
Tags : #Sabarimala Temple