[Read Petition] Two women who entered Sabrimala temple approach Supreme Court, seek police protection; SC to hear the matter tomorrow

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]HE Supreme Court has agreed to hear the petition tomorrow, January 18, 2019 filed by two women from Kerala — namely Bindu A and Kanakadurga — who entered Sabrimala temple on January 2, 2019, following the Supreme Court’s verdict dated September 28, 2018 lifting ban on the entering of women of the age of 10 to 50 years.

The Petitioners have approached the Supreme Court seeking direction from the Court that all concerned authorities be directed to allow women of all ages to enter Sabarimala temple without any let or hindrance, and without danger to life and liberty, to ensure security and safe passage, including police security to women wishing to enter Sabarimala temple in future.

Senior advocate Indira Jaising mentioned the petition before the CJI today, who agreed to list the same tomorrow.

The Petitioners have also requested the Court to direct Kerala Government to provide full security, 24/7, to them who have entered the temple, and to deal with protesters indulging in acts of violence, physical and/or verbal on social media or otherwise against them, in accordance with law.

Further, the purification ceremony done at Sabarimala temple is evidence of untouchability being practiced at Sabarimala and that it is based on the notions of purity and pollution, thus violating Article 17 of the Constitution of India, says Petition.

The Petition has also highlighted the fact that Bindu A, petitioner no. 1, is a Dalit woman and that she feels deeply denigrated by the conduct of purification ritual by the Thantri of Sabrimala temple after her entry into Sabarimala on January 2, 2019.

Ever since those two women have entered Sabrimala temple, they have had to run from one safe house to another, amidst violent threats against them on social media and other mediums. Fearing for their life and safety, they have had to live in hiding. Moreover, the Thantri of the Sabarimala temple conducted a purification ritual on 02-01-2019, immediately after the entry of the Petitioners.

Petitioners have said that the purification ritual is representative of a cleansing ceremony, signifying that they were impure, which is violative of their dignity under Article 21. It is also in direct contravention to their rights under Article 25 where the Petitioners are “equally entitled” to their right to religion under the Constitution of India.


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