CPI-M favours entry of women of all age groups at hill shrine

CPI-M in Kerala said the party is in favour of entry of women of all age groups to the Lord Ayyappa hill shrine at Sabarimala.

PTI| Updated: Jul 12, 2016, 18:19 PM IST
CPI-M favours entry of women of all age groups at hill shrine

Thiruvananthapuram: CPI-M in Kerala on Tuesday said the party is in favour of entry of women of all age groups to the Lord Ayyappa hill shrine at Sabarimala, where as per tradition entry of women of menstruating age is restricted.

The party has a view that all women should be allowed to enter the Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple, CPI-M state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan told reporters here.

"In fact, the party is of the view that women should be allowed in all the temples," he said.

"If there is any practical difficulty in allowing women (of all age groups) to Sabrimala hill shrine, Travancore Devaswom Board, which manages the temple, should bring that matter to the notice of the Supreme Court," he added.

The party-led LDF government would file a fresh affidavit in the apex court in a case related to the issue of women's entry to the Sabarimala Temple, he said.

The previous Congress-led UDF government and Travancore Devaswom Board had taken the stand that customs and traditions of the temple should be preserved.

The apex court had yesterday indicated that it may refer to a five-judge constitution bench the issue of the centuries-old practice of barring entry of women between 10 and 50 years of age to the historic temple, saying it pertains to violation of fundamental rights.

On reports of some Keralites gone missing and suspected to have joined the terror outfit Islamic State, Balakrishnan said efforts to blame the entire Muslim community on the issue "is not appropriate."

"CPI-M is against all types of terrorism... Those type of people should be isolated from the society," he said.

Referring to some IUML leaders in the state supporting Islamic preacher Zakir Naik, who came under scrutiny after it was reported that his speeches inspired some of the Dhaka attackers, he said, "IUML should make its stand clear on Zakir Naik."

Asked about the CPI-M stand, he said, "After getting more information about Naik, the party would make its stand known (on the issue)."