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Last Updated : Sep 28, 2018 04:58 PM IST | Source: PTI

Kerala Devaswom minister welcomes SC verdict allowing entry of women at Sabarimala temple

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, in its 4:1 verdict, said that banning the entry of women into the shrine is gender discrimination and the practice violates rights of Hindu women.

Kerala Devaswom Minister Kadakampally Surendran Friday welcomed the Supreme Court's verdict allowing entry of women of all ages at the Sabarimala temple and said the "historic" judgement was the culmination of a long-drawn legal battle.

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, in its 4:1 verdict, said that banning the entry of women into the shrine is gender discrimination and the practice violates rights of Hindu women.

It was for the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) to implement the verdict and to ensure protection to the women visiting the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa, the minister said.

The LDF government has favoured the entry of women into the Ayyappa temple. The state government's stand is not just for the Sabarimala temple, but in all places of worship no discrimination should be shown to women, Surendran said.

Temple Tantri Kandararu Rajeevaru said though the verdict was "disappointing", but they accepted it.

"I respect the court verdict. It is very difficult to arrange special facilities for women in the present context. The Board has to make arrangements," he said.

Travancore Devaswom Board President A Padmakumar told reporters that the Board accepted the court's verdict.

When asked if the board was happy with the judgement, he said this was not a question of whether the TDB is happy or disappointed. "We are bound to implement it and we will implement the same," Padmakumar said.

"With regard to facilities that has to be made ensured for women devotees," he said, adding that the board will take necessary steps after consulting with the state government.

Meanwhile, Board member K P Sankara Das said the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government has taken a stand and it is not possible for the TDB to take a different view.

Shashi Kumar Varma, Pandalam Royal family member said the verdict was "painful" for the family.
First Published on Sep 28, 2018 12:46 pm
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