Sabarimala LIVE: Male devotees begin trek as 24-hour window opens in temple

New Delhi, Nov 5, News24 Bureau: Sabarimala row is in news once again as all developments today in the celibate Lord Ayyappa's temple is being watched closely. The temple is under the lens ever since the Supreme Court has removed the ban, thereby removing age-old tradition and allowing women between the age-group between 10-50. This decision has ignited a big row with the protagonists vs the devotees who were opposing the move. Despite efforts to enter the temple, many women protagonists could not make history as they were forcefully stopped from entering the temple by the devotees; both men and women. And the temple doors were shut with scant respect to the SC verdict.

 In Kerala, devotees begin the trek from the Nilakkal base camp to the Sabarimala temple. The temple will open this evening and will be closed after the 'Athazha puja' tomorrow evening.
A thick security cover is in place in and around Sabarimala, which had witnessed protests last month after the Supreme Court permitted women of menstrual age group to offer prayers at the shrine.

Devotees, who arrived at Erumeli since Sunday evening, protested this morning for not being allowed to leave for Pamba and Sannidhanam. They blocked traffic chanting 'Ayyappa Sarnam'.

"We have been waiting since last evening. We were told that we would be allowed to leave at 6 am. Now, they are telling us that KSRTC buses will be allowed to leave only by 12 pm. We have come to offer prayers to Lord Ayyappa. Please allow us to go," an angry devotee said.

If private vehicles are not being allowed, they should be taken in the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation buses to Pamba, the devotee said.

Media personnel have also not been allowed to leave Nilackal for Pamba and 'Sannidhanam' (temple complex) from the base camp here till 9 am this morning.

With Agencies