Thiruvananthapuram: A woman has been charged with making a casteist slur against Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, said media reports on Thursday. The woman made the comment during a protest against the Supreme Court order quashing the ban on entry of women to the Sabarimala temple. The case has been lodged on the complaint of Sri Narayana Dharma Paripalam Yogam (SNDP) office-bearer V Sunil Kumar. (Also read: SC Refuses Urgent Hearing on Sabarimala) Also Read - With COVID Guidelines in Place, Kerala’s Sabarimala Temple to Open For Pilgrims From Nov 16
The video of the said incident went viral on social media, said a report in The Indian Express. The video led to a lot of criticism across the board, including from SNDP general secretary Vellapally Natesan. Natesan had said the upper castes were not able to bear the state being ruled by an Ezhava. The SNDP has been the frontal organisation of the Ezhava community which is classified among other backward castes, from many decades. According to the daily, the woman has been identified as Maniamma of Cherukole of Pathanamthitta district. Also Read - Sabarimala Latest News: Shrine Won't Open to Public For Monthly Prayers, Temple Festival Also Cancelled
Meanwhile, the Travancore Devaswom Board, which runs the Sabarimala temple, has informed the Kerala High Court that it can make only limited arrangements for women devotees expected to visit the shrine in the coming pilgrimage season. In a report submitted in response to the court’s recent directive, the board said it cannot make elaborate facilities this season. It said 500 toilets will be set up for women devotees in the pilgrim centre for the season commencing next month. Also Read - Facility For Sanitisation, no More Than 10 Devotees at a Time: Here's How Temples in Kerala Might Reopen
The report said only limited facilities could be arranged for women for changing their clothes near the Pamba river at the foothill of Sabarimala.
A bench comprising Justices P R Ramachandra Menon and Devan Ramachandran had directed the board to inform it about the steps planned to be implemented for women devotees in view of a Supreme Court order allowing entry of women of all ages in the shrine. The bench was considering a periodical report by the Sabarimala special commissioner mandated to oversee matters related to the shrine and Sabarimala.