Following the Supreme Court’s ruling allowing the entry of women across all age groups into the Sabarimala temple in Kerala, the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) has now come forward to state that there will be no separate or special facilities would be made available for women who want to take part in the pilgrimage to the temple.
TDB president A Padmakumar told the media on Wednesday that, ’existing facilities’ would continue to remain so and that no special arrangements would be made. Earlier, in an affidavit to the High Court, the same board had stated that separate spaces would be arranged for women and that special toilets would be constructed for women too.
However, hours after this announcement came to light, Padmakumar took a completely different stance after a board meeting was held with TDB members.
100 separate toilet facilities for women, to be painted pink in colour, space for changing, were all planned for female pilgrims visiting the temple as per the affidavit submitted to the high court. The board had also planned to include spaces for women near the Pamba river and the KSRTC stand, as well as atop the hill.
The board now has reportedly said that considering that most of the members of the board are not for the idea of women of all ages being allowed to enter the temple, they are reconsidering the implementation of these ideas.
Padmakumar also stated that it has not been yet decided whether female police personnel would be deployed at the temple.
On Friday, September 28, the Supreme Court pronounced its landmark decision to repeal the ban on women between the ages of 10 and 50 from entering the temple. This move has been met with both outbursts as well as praise from different sectors. The temple board, with this new decision, has made its stance clear.