Sabarimala: Mobs attack women near India Hindu temple


18 October, 2018 11:02 AM

Sabarimala: Mobs attack women near India Hindu temple

Many of the protesters against women entering the temple are women themselves. Photo: GETTY IMAGES

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Crowds of angry Hindu devotees have prevented women from entering one of Hinduism's holiest temples despite a historic Supreme Court ruling.

Crowds of agitated protesters in Kerala attacked female devotees, many of whom turned back as a result.

Several people including an old woman were injured as crowds threw stones at vehicles and attacked police officers.

The Sabarimala temple has historically been closed to women of "menstruating age".

Hinduism regards menstruating women as unclean and bars them from participating in religious rituals.

But while most Hindu temples allow women to enter as long as they are not menstruating, the Sabarimala temple was unusual in that it was one of the few that do not allow women in a broad age group to enter at all.

This was overturned by the Supreme Court last month, with judges observing that "the right to practice religion is available to both men and women".

The temple did open its doors as directed by the court ruling. However, not a single woman was able to enter because of the protesters.