The video shows the women have not climbed the sacred 18 steps, used by pilgrims who take the 41-day vow and carry the sacred offering of ‘irumudikettu‘. They have, instead, opted for a side entrance, used by VIPs and the media, which gets them directly in front of the sopanam and inside the main area of the temple.
Visuals of two women (Bindu and Kanaga Durga) at Sabarimala shrine earlier this morning pic.twitter.com/347z3KWAwU
— Arvind Gunasekar (@arvindgunasekar) January 2, 2019
It is reported that these two women had tried climbing the temple in December but couldn’t complete it owing to severe protests. Their mission to climb the temple defies what most of the priests and devotees subscribe to. They believe that the ban on women between 10 and 50 years should stay as the deity Lord Ayyappa is celibate. However, on September 28, the Supreme Court overturned the ban thus making it possible for women below 50 to enter the temple. However, post the lifting of the ban on women, there have been massive protests in Kerala with it even turning violent.
On January 1, 2019, lakhs and lakhs of women formed a ‘woman wall’ as counter to the Sangh Parivar campaign against the entry of women of all ages at Sabarimala temple following the Supreme Court verdict. CM Pinrayi Vijayan shared that the wall was to show that women of Kerala choose progress over misogynistic values.
“This wall is a warning to the conservative-communal forces, which try to deny women their legitimate rights and renaissance values. The women’s wall has emerged as a loud announcement that Kerala women are with the progressive thought,” he said.