Police in Kerala announced on Friday, November 15, that it has deployed over 10,000 officers in and around Sabarimala temple as of Friday ahead of the two-month pilgrimage known as Mandala Pooja that began at 17:00 (local time) on Saturday, November 16. However, the state government has reportedly said that it will not protect women who attempt to enter the temple, and local media outlets reported that police officers had turned away 10 women under the age of 50 who tried to enter the temple on Saturday. However, local police claimed that the women abandoned their efforts of their own volition.
A heightened security presence and crowded conditions, as well as localized transportation disruptions, are expected in the vicinity of the temple in the coming weeks and months. Clashes between male and female worshipers are possible.
The Supreme Court ruled in September 2018 that women of all age are allowed to enter the Sabarimala temple after locals banned women between the ages of 10 and 50. On November 14, 2019, the five-judge bench that had made the September 2018 ruling deferred a verdict on a petition to review its decision to a larger seven-judge bench.
Individuals in Kerala are advised to monitor the situation, avoid public gatherings, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.
Copyright and Disclaimer