Another woman ‘enters’ Sabarimala, Sec 144 imposed in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: Confusion prevailed over the entry of a 46-year-old Sri Lankan Tamil woman into the Lord Ayyappa temple on Sabarimala late Thursday night with the woman denying it and official sources claiming otherwise.

While the woman, Sasikala, said she was not allowed to undertake the trek to the shrine and sent back by the police, official sources told PTI that she entered the sanctum sanctorum and offered prayers.

Sasikala, who was accompanied by her husband, Saravanan, and son for darshan, told reporters at Pamba that she was not allowed to offer prayers at the temple.

Saravanan said only he and his son were able to offer worship at the temple on Thursday, the day when parts of Kerala witnessed violent protests over the entry of two women of menstruating age into the shrine.

Last night, some television channels aired visuals of the woman with ‘irumudikettu’ (sacred offerings) and two policemen in mufti (plain clothes) accompanying her. On spotting the media, the policemen were seen scurrying away.

Meanwhile, soon after the state-wide hartal across Kerala ended on a violent note injuring more than 100 persons, Palakkad District Collector D Balamurali imposed curfew under Section 144 in Palakkad town till 6 pm today.

This comes after the district witnessed violent clashes between BJP and CPI(M) members over the course of the dawn-to-dusk hartal on Thursday, announced after two women in their 40s, Bindu Ammini and Kanakadurga, successfully entered Sabarimala temple early on Wednesday morning.

NT Bureau