A 46-year-old Sri Lankan Tamil woman has reportedly become the third woman, after Bindu and Kanakadurga, to enter the Sabarimala temple amid widespread protests.
The police has confirmed that the woman, Sasikala, has visited the temple. Top sources at Kerala Chief Minister’s office also confirmed the same to The Week.
Accompanied by her husband, she entered the temple ten minutes before it was about to be closed at 11 pm on Thursday, according to Hindustan Times.
She claimed her uterus was removed after an operation so she does not fall in the category of menstruating women, the report added.
Earlier, confusion had prevailed over her entry into the Lord Ayyappa temple with the woman denying it and official sources claiming otherwise.
While Sasikala had said that she was not allowed to undertake the trek to the shrine and was sent back by the police, official sources had told PTI that she entered the sanctum sanctorum and offered prayers.
Thursday night, some television channels aired visuals of the woman with “irumudikettu” (sacred offerings) and two policemen in plain clothes accompanying her.
On spotting the media, the policemen were seen scurrying away.
“There was no protest from devotees. But police sent me back. I am an Ayyappa devotee. They did not allow me to go to the shrine. I am not scared of anyone...,” Sasikala had told reporters on her return to Pamba, foothills of Sabarimala.
She also claimed that she had observed the 41-day “vratham” (penance).
This comes after 42-year-old Bindu, a college lecturer and CPI(ML) activist from Kozhikode district’s Koyilandy, and Kanakadurga (44) a civil supplies department employee from Angadipuram in Malappuram, entered the Sabarimala shrine. Kerala witnessed violence and unrest across the state as the news spread.
(With PTI inputs)