New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday directed the Kerala government to provide adequate security to the two women who entered and offered prayers at Sabarimala Temple on January 2. (Also read: ‘PM Trying to Turn Sabarimala Issue Into Ayodhya of South India,’ Says Yechury)

A bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices LN Rao and Dinesh Maheshwari said it was only going into the aspect of security to the two women and would not like to entertain any other prayer.

The bench also refused to tag the matter along with the pending petitions in the Sabarimala case.

In the plea, one of the women, who was attacked by her mother-in-law, had sought security for both the women.

The plea sought directions to all authorities to allow women of all age groups to enter the temple without any hindrance and to ensure security and safe passage, including police security to women wishing to enter the temple in future. It also pointed to danger to her life and liberty.

Earlier this month, the two women — Kanakadurga and Bindu — had stepped into the shrine guarded by the police, more than three months after the apex court’s judgment lifting the ban on the entry of girls and women between 10 and 50 years of age into the shrine of Lord Ayyappa, its “eternally celibate” deity.

Despite the Supreme Court’s historic ruling on September 28 last year, permitting women in the 10-50 age group, no children or young women in the ‘barred’ group had been able to offer prayers at the shrine following frenzied protests by devotees and right-wing outfits.

Meanwhile, just a couple of days ago, massive protests broke out near the Sabarimala temple after two women, reportedly aged below 50 years, tried to trek the hill shrine. The women were stopped by protesters at Neelimala, 1 km after they crossed the base camp. According to reports, the women were taken to safety by the police.