In the backdrop of the Sabarimala controversy that doesn’t seem to be ending any time soon, Kerala CM, Pinarayi Vijayan came down heavily on the Thazamon family which holds the priestly rights over the temple. While addressing a rally of Left Democratic Front (LDF) rally in Pathanamthitta, Vijayan challenged the credibilities of the Sabarimala priest.
“They say that Lord Ayyappa is a celibate. But then there are other idols who are also eternal celibates all over the country. However, in such temples, the priest should also be a celibate. But we know the case of Sabarimala priests, they are not only in grihasthasramam (wedlock) but have been involved in prostitution”, the CM said. He also mocked the Pandalam Royal family going bankrupt and being forced to join the Travancore Kingdom.
Vijayan’s “prostitution comment came in reference to a 12 year old incident when a former Thantri Kandararu Mohanaru was arrested along with two women, one of them Sobha John identified as a goon leader. However, later the court had acquitted the priest of charges against him. Yet since then he has abstained from performing rituals in the temple.
Despite giving all the efforts, Kerala government failed in implementing Supreme Court order of allowing women of reproductive age inside the Sabarimala shrine. The government which initially did not concede to the demands of the devotees and Thanthri family, eventually had to withdraw police support for the activists who tried to enter the temple.