Young woman enters Sabarimala; Returns due to protests

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The TV journalist was sitting in her auto when the protestors surrounded her vehicle and blocked her from entering the temple.

At least three women journalists were attacked by an angry mob on Wednesday while on their way to report the protests over the Supreme Court's verdict to allow women of all ages into the temple dedicated to Lord Ayyappa in Kerala's Sabarimala as tension mounted in Pathanamthitta district.

Even before the police charge several people could be seen with blood streaming down their faces, suggesting further clashes had taken place with police nearer the temple.

Crowds of agitated protesters in Kerala attacked female devotees, many of whom turned back as a result. She held Easwar responsible for provoking others, leading to the attack on journalists.

BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy on Wednesday attacked the right-wing Hindu outfits for opposing the entry of women into the revered Sabarimala temple in Kerala despite the Supreme Court order allowing women of all ages to enter the famous hill shrine.

Those against it include a large number of female devotees, the former royal family who are custodians of the temple, the Congress party and the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP).

"We will not allow anyone to take law and order into their hands" Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said, adding that adequate police, including female officers, would be deployed at the temple to uphold the Supreme Court's decision.

They were outraged by the Sabarimala temple chief's statement that he would allow women to enter only after a machine was invented to detect if they were "pure" - meaning that they weren't menstruating.

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But contrary to expectations, no woman aged 10 to 50 was able to make it to the temple, which will remain open for five days.

Nilakkal: A young woman who had tried to enter the holy shrine of Sabarimala was blocked by protestors. After the women devotees being attacked and sent back from entering the temple, now, a woman journalist's auto was attacked and blocked by agitators in Kerala's Pathanamthitta.

Meanwhile, another group of devotees said they would stage a Gandhian-style peaceful protest in Pamba.

Kerala has been tense as the gates of Sabarimala shrine open on Wednesday. They went after her. "If any change is made they will have to kill us and go over our bodies".

Women are permitted to enter most Hindu temples but female devotees are still barred from entry by some, despite intensifying campaigns by rights activists against the bans.

"The government is only implementing the court order", he told reporters at the Sannidhanam.

This is the third religious site in India where women have gained the right to enter through judicial intervention. Up to 50 million devotees visit the temple each year.

Petitioners who appealed to the Supreme Court to lift the ban said that this custom violated equality guaranteed under India's constitution.

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