November 15, 2019 6:12:59 pm
Kerala’s temple affairs minister Kadakampally Surendran said Friday that the Sabarimala shrine, which has been at the centre of an intense row over the subject of entry of women of all ages, is not a place for people to display their activism. He also indicated the government’s reluctance to offer police protection to such persons.
“Right from the start, I have maintained that Sabarimala is not a place for people like Trupti Desai to display their strength…there are some people who hold press conferences before they arrive. That’s where the problems begin. Their aim is to campaign and spread the word. They want to display their public image in society. Devotion is not on their mind. So the government cannot stand with the interests of such people,” Surendran told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram.
The minister, who is in charge of temple management boards including the Travancore Devaswom Board that oversees the Sabarimala temple, also underlined that there’s a lack of clarity in the Supreme Court’s Thursday ruling that kept the review petitions in abeyance before a larger constitutional bench examines arguments of religion and practice. This was an echo of chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s statement yesterday in which he said the government would seek legal opinion on implementing the top court verdict.
Surendran said the government was committed to holding a peaceful pilgrimage season at Sabarimala that will begin November 17. “We have to create a peaceful atmosphere there. Everyone has that responsibility including the government, political parties, public and caste-religious organisations. The media also plays a big role,” he said.
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