Kerala BJP justifies Centre's Sabarimala stance

Ravi Shankar Prasad (PTI File Photo)

BJP leaders in Kerala are on the defensive with Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad evading a direct reply to a question in the Parliament whether a law would be enacted to protect faiths and beliefs over Sabarimala Ayyappa temple.

BJP Kerala state president P S Sreedharan Pillai said that since the left-front government in Kerala had taken a stand that it would not take any woman to Sabarimala, the row had ended. He added that the Union minister restricted his reply as the matter was sub-judice.

While the CPM and the Congress are attacking the BJP over the issue, the Sabarimala Karma Samithi, a forum of various Hindu outfits that spearheaded the stir against Sabarimala women's entry, maintained that a central law was essential to prevent entry of women in the 10-50 age group to Sabarimala temple if the court order was ‘against the faith’. The Samithi would also continue to campaign for this, said its leader Swami Chithanandapuri.

Congress MPs from Kerala Shashi Tharoor and Anto Antony had raised the question whether a law would be enacted on Sabarimala, which has been an assurance being made by the BJP during the Lok Sabha election campaign. But the Union law minister only replied that the Sabarimala women entry issue was now under court's consideration.

Recently when the UDF MP from Kerala N K Premachandran mooted a private members' bill on protecting religious practices at Sabarimala, BJP leader in Kerala Kummanam Rajasekharan had said that it was in line with BJP's stand.

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