Woman Activist Trekking Sabarimala Attacked With Pepper Spray
A right-wing activist was arrested on Tuesday, November 25, for spraying chilli powder on Bindu Ammini, another activist, outside the Kochi Police Commissioner’s office. The activist who attacked Bindu was identified as Srinath Padmanabhan.
The video going viral on the internet shows that Bindu was attacked outside Ernakulam city police commissioner’s office while the police and the media were watching. Bindu, who was later taken to a hospital, had come to the commissioner’s office along with a Pune-based activist Trupti Desai and others to seek police protection before they attempt to trek till Sabarimala.
Shocking visuals of pepper/ chilli spray being sprayed at Bindu Ammini outisde the commissioner office by one of the protesters . She has been moved to the hospital. Six other women including Trupti Desai inside the police commissioner's office. #Sabarimala #Kerala @ndtv pic.twitter.com/d24chgs8b3
— Sneha Koshy (@SnehaMKoshy) November 26, 2019
This was the second attempt by these activists to visit the shrine after protesters restricted her entry in November last year.
Adding up to this outrage, activist Trupti Desai, along with 6 other women activists on November 26, declared that she is going to enter the Sabarimala temple. She spoke to ANI and said, “Today is the Constitution Day and on this day, we will go to Sabarimala temple as it is our right.” She said that the ban is an attempt to diminish the voice of women and also added, “The rights under the Constitution allow us to pray to God and the right to equality, which is somewhere taken away from us despite the Supreme Court’s order that there is no stay on women’s entry in Sabarimala temple. So we will go inside.”
Kerala Devaswom Minister, Kadakampally Surendran spoke to NDTV on November 16 and said, “This is not a place for activism. This is not a place for activists like Trupti Desai to show their strength. We won’t take them in. Let them go get a court order.”
The movement has been getting stronger and women activists are saying that they are ready to go to any extent to trek the Sabarimala hill. Trupti said that if they are stopped by the police asking for the supreme court order, the police will be asked to show the restraining order from the court that asks them not to trek.
The women activists came from different parts of the country and are strongly determined to visit the temple. They have made it clear that they will not go back without entering the Sabarimala temple. Trupti said that they have written a letter to the Prime Minister, Union Home Minister of Kerala and the DGP for security. They will continue to enter the temple whether they get security or not.
The Supreme court lifted the ban on women’s entry into Sabarimala temple on September 28 last year. Despite this, there have been protests in and around Sabarimala to let women into the temple. It has been a strong tug of war between the women activists and right-wing activists and continues to create a hullabaloo around the issue.