Policemen chase away a protester during a protest against the entry of two women to the Sabarimala temple, in Thiruvananthapuram, Wednesday, Jan 2, 2019. (PTI Photo)

Sabarimala Row To See Next Battle In Supreme Court

Nearly three months after the Supreme Court allowed women of all age groups entry into Kerala’s Sabarimala temple, two finally managed to enter its premises and offer prayers. Protests erupted at several places after the news spread and the priests shut down the shrine temporarily for “purification” rituals.

Also read: Supreme Court’s Sabarimala Verdict Is Flawed, Says Mukul Rohatgi

Supreme Court advocate Indira Jaising said she was not surprised but “saddened” by the purification rituals conducted at the temple. Jaising appeared for the “Happy to Bleed” campaigners who work to dispel prejudices against menstruating women.

A clutch of review petitions has been filed challenging the Supreme Court’s order to break the age-old tradition of restricting menstruating women—between 10 years and 50 years—from entering the premises of Lord Ayyappa’s shrine.

One such activist, Rahul Easwar, said bringing the two women into the temple in the cover of darkness was a “cheap and spineless” move by the Kerala government keen to implement the Supreme Court’s order. The organisations opposed to the apex court’s verdict would exhaust all possible legal options to have the judgment reversed, he told BloombergQuint. “An appeal to the Prime Minister to bring in an ordinance, overruling the Supreme Court order will also be made.”

We have a two-pronged approach. We will try the Supreme Court way, we will try the ordinance way too. We will definitely fight till the very end.
Rahul Easwar, Activist 

But Jaising hopes the apex court will issue strict instructions to implement its order. The next hearing is on Jan. 22.

The one thing I will be looking for is firm directions by the court to ensure that its own judgments are implemented. We respect the court. The court is as effective as the implementation of its judgments.
Indira Jaising, Advocate, Supreme Court