Sabarimala Temple Row Live Updates: Amid threats of “mass suicides” and disruption, the famous Sabarimala Temple in Kerala opened its doors on Wednesday evening at 5 pm — including for women devotees of all ages. Tensions are running high in Kerala as the gates to the hill shrine have been opened for the first time since the Supreme Court lifted the age-old entry ban on women in the 10-50 age group.
Read LIVE updates of Sabarimala hartal here
At least one elderly woman was hurt in the violent protests that took place in Nilakkal near the Sabarimala base camp. The police took to lathicharge as protesters pelted stones at those trying to trek to the Sabarimala shrine. The media personnel, including female journalists, present at the site were also attacked and threatened by the protesters who asked them to turn off their cameras and return.
Two women who tried to undertake the 5-km trek from the base camp at Pamba river were forced to return after walking for a few metres.
Earlier today, as devotees made their way to the shrine, the police detained multiple protesters for blocking the pilgrims. Representatives of the Thantri (priest) family and members of the Pandalam Royal family were also detained. The BJP, in a warning to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, said, “The protest will change the face of Kerala.” Kerala BJP leaders also warned of “severe consequences” if the police lathicharge “Hindu devotees.”
In Pictures | Kerala tense as Sabarimala temple opens to women today