After the apex court of India allowed the entry of women of all ages into the Kerala’s famous Sabariamala Temple, the protests are pervasive all over the state. The verdict has led to unprecedented Hindu unity in Kerala. The cabal described the verdict as giant step towards gender equality, a major blow to patriarchy, women’s liberation etc. Interestingly enough the verdict which has been considered as pro-women is being vehemently opposed by the women of the state. It is the women of the Kerala who are leading the protest against the verdict of the Supreme Court on Sabarimala.
Thousands of women from Kerala also took to Twitter and other social media platforms with placards saying #ReadytoWait signalling their protest against the attack on the ages old custom by the SC judgment.
The protest is gaining momentum outside the state as well. A large number of people were arrested on Monday in Nagercoil, in neighbouring Tamil Nadu. There are plans to launch massive protest in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu as well.
Clearly, the verdict hasn’t gone down well with Bhagwan Ayyappa’s devotees be it men or women. Even the national parties who earlier tacitly supported the Supreme Court decision, has now done a complete somersault and enthusiastically supporting the Bhagwan Ayyappa’s devotees. The state leadership of the Congress has also extended its support to Bhagwan Ayyappa’s devotees.
The BJP, RSS, VHP are supporting the protests. However, there is a one man who clearly refused to see the writing on the wall, and he is none other than Communist Chief Minister of Kerala- Pinarayi Vijayan. He has remained committed to implementing the verdict in letter and spirit. He has said, “Devotees have been divided since the beginning. The Supreme Court considered all divergent views before announcing the final verdict. Our government accepts the decision. No woman who wants to go to Sabarimala can be stopped.” Pinarayi Vijayan also said that his government will not file any review petition. The voices within the party who hinted at filing a review petition earned the displeasure of the Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan. Travancore Devaswom Board chief and CPM leader A Padma Kumar is one of them.
At a time when a protest is breaking all the caste barriers and Hindus of Kerala are showing unprecedented unity, Pinarayi Vijayan’s communism might prove to be a folly. He might end up paying heavy price in the upcoming general elections as well as in the next state assembly elections. This time rival outfits like Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam and the Nair Service Society is on the same boat with Ayyappa devotees. The judgment on Sabarimala temple from the SC has proved to be a blessing in disguise for it has united men and women from all the sections of Kerala Hindus. The dream of RSS to have united Hindu voter base is not very far from becoming a reality.