Around 30 women from Chennai have decided to go to Sabarimala temple to pay respects to Lord Ayyappa. Aged between 35 and 40, these women are a part of Manithi, which works for the welfare of women and children.

“We are ardent devotees of Lord Ayyappa, and the Supreme Court ruling on allowing entry of women + brought us joy. However, it’s sad that many

women are being turned away by protesters who claim that we would make the temple unholy,” said Vasumathi Vasanth, one of the organization’s members who will also be going to Sabarimala.

They will be leaving the city on December 22 and will be reaching Sabarimala on December 23.

Though the Supreme Court in its verdict allowed women of all age groups to offer prayers at the shrine. There have been protests and violence in Kerala against the verdict.

Earlier, around 16 were turned away from entering the temple premises, and the state government couldn’t do much to ensure their entry into the temple.

Though this group of women is aware of the possible consequences and violence that can happen due to this yet they seem firm and determined. “The more they push us away, the more we will fight back. And facing such situations is not new for women, we face protests and ordeal in our daily lives. We will enter the temple, come what may,” added Vasanthi.

Selvi Mano, who will be joining the pilgrimage, criticised the BJP government for being against the verdict.

Salvi said, “There was a time when there were protests against women going to study, work or even to get their right to vote. We’ve crossed all that and will break

this taboo too.”

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