A group of six women of menstrual age arrived at the Pamba base camp today in an attempt to enter the Sabarimala temple. Protests against the group of women have intensified, with protesters claiming they will not allow them to enter the famous hill shrine. Police said 11 women had reached Pamba, but only six of them wanted to make the full trek. "We are awaiting instructions from our higher officials," a police officer told NDTV.
After the Supreme Court opened the gates of the Sabarimala temple to women of all ages, protesters have forced more than a dozen women of menstrual age to abort their attempt to reach the shrine. But the six women who are attempting to enter the temple today are part of a group of 30-50 women who are trying to reach the famous hill shrine collectively. "We are moving strategically. There are many Dalit women who are also reaching Sabarimala for darshan today. The state and police have to show enough will to ensure that we can have our rights," one of the leaders of the group has told NDTV.
Here are the highlights on the situation at Sabarimala:
Eleven women, who were waiting at Pamba to attempt the 12-km trek to the Sabarimala hill shrine, said they were evicted from the base camp by the Kerala police following a huge face-off with protesters. The police have denied the accusation. The group was expected to be the first of several planning to attempt the trek in December - three months after a Supreme Court order that opened the temple doors to women of all ages. Around 40 women are expected to arrive over the next few days to attempt offer puja when the temple opens for Makarsankranti on December 30.