[Video] Thousands Protest Against Sabarimala Verdict, Police Use Water Cannons & Tear Gas In Thiruvananthapuram
The custom of barring women between 10 to 50 years from entering Sabarimala temple was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in a landmark judgement on September 28. While this decision was considered a major victory by women’s rights activists, many people including organisation like BJP Yuva Morcha and RSS have been protesting against this decision.
“Going against Indian culture”
Today, thousands of BJP Yuva Morcha members from Kerala protested against the verdict in Thiruvananthapuram. Police had to use water cannons and tear gas to keep the protesters away. The protest that started in a peaceful manner went awry and the police resorted to using force against the men.
On October 10, 5000 Ayyappa devotees under the banner of ‘Ayyappa Samrakshana Samithi’ and various other Hindu organisation assembled to protest against the verdict. The Kerala unit of Shiv Sena had called for a statewide dawn to dusk hartal (strike) on October 1, to protest against the verdict. On October 10, Sabarimala protests called by Hindu Aikya Vedi were staged across 200 strategic locations across the state, which virtually left it paralysed, reported India Today. The BJP-led five day long “Save Sabarimala Yatra” was also flagged off from Pandalam.
It is not just men who are fighting against the verdict, but women also. They shouted, “Protect the rituals of Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala”. The Congress, BJP and various Hindu organisations have asked the Left government to file a review petition against the verdict, but the state has maintained that they would not do so.
The reason for the protest against the verdict is that the rituals practised in the temple have existed since before the Constitution and they feel that it should be preserved. They say that the verdict is based on practical ideologies without giving a thought about rituals and age-old cultures.
— G Sreedathan (@Sreedath) October 2, 2018
The Pandalam royal family which has an integral role in the Sabarimala temple has also initiated the legal consultation to file a review petition, expressing their disappointment over the Supreme Court’s decision.
“Just by a verdict, the century-old traditions of Sabarimala has been changed and that’s very sad. Every religious place has its own traditions and culture that is practised for its own reasons,” said the palace spokesperson, reported News18.
The Logical Indian take
It is strange to see so many people, including women, are against the verdict. Supreme Court allowed the entry of women of all ages to Sabarimala so that everyone has the equal right to worship. According to the Constitution of India, every Indian citizen has the right to practice their own religion and also has the right to worship. By striking down an age-old sexist and misogynist custom, the apex court is ensuring that this right is implemented. It is time to understand that humanity is above customs and traditions.