Travancore Devasvom Board to file a report with SC on the Nature of Obstacles

Sabarimala board to submit report to SC on obstacles in implementing order .

Travancore Devasvom Board, that manages the Shabarimala temple said it would file a report with the Supreme Court on the nature of obstacles in implementing the order allowing women of all ages to enter the shrine.

The end-September Supreme Court order that scrapped the custom of barring women in the 10-50 age group from entering the hill shrine has triggered protests across Kerala. There have been clashes between those who seek restoration of the restrictions on women and police at the temple base camp.

“We will file a report, a detailed one, with the Supreme Court on the condition prevailing at the Shabarimala hills,” Devasvom Board chief A Padmakumar told on Friday after a board meeting that took stock of the situation.

But the board isn’t at present considering filing a petition on its own seeking the Supreme Court to review the order.

“This is just a report, not a review petition,” Shankara Das, a Devasvom Board member, told . “But the board is in touch with legal experts on future action. Our board will get in touch with (senior lawyer) Abhishek Manu Singhvi today, or tomorrow.”

Devasvom administrators told that there were already 23 review petitions filed before the Supreme Court by others seeking reversal of the September 28 order.

The administrators said they were upset over the temple grounds turning into a “host for activists”.

On Friday, three women attempted to enter the shrine. Rehana Fatima, an activist, and another woman, reportedly a journalist from Telangana, arrived at the entry point to the shrine in the morning, with a team of about 50 policemen giving them security.

Devotees held a sit in protest blocking the path to the shrine. After a consultation with the temple priests, the police escorted the women back to the base. “The tantrik (priest) said clearly that he would shut the temple if they are allowed. Both of them (women) have agreed to go back now,” inspector general S Sreejith told.

Later in the day, another woman arrived at the base camp saying that she wanted to trek to the shrine. She returned after the police refused to provide her security.

“This is a very serious situation, not just in terms of law and order but about the peace of Shabarimala. We cannot have protests at the base camp and tranquillity at the shrine,” one of the administrators told .

Meanwhile, the state’s ruling CPM and the BJP accused each other for creating the trouble at Shabarimala. While the CPM said the BJP and RSS were instigating the protestors, the state Congress and BJP spokespeople blamed the absence of chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan for the crisis.

The chief minister is currently touring in the Gulf region seeking help from Indians there for the rebuilding of flood-hit Kerala.

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