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Sabarimala board to move SC, buy time to implement order
 
(Thiruvananthapuram, Nov17, 2018): Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) on Friday decided to approach Supreme Court to seek more time to implement its verdict allowing entry of women of all ages to Sabarimala temple. The petition will be filed on Saturday or Monday by TDB's counsel Chander Uday Singh.

TDB's decision came a day after Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan did a U-turn by giving nod to the Board to buy time by approaching the apex court on the vexed issue. Earlier, the LDF government had consistently opposed the idea of a review petition or even seeking more time to implement the SC verdict.

A meeting of TDB was held at Nilackal on Friday following which its president A Padmakumar said the Board has decided to go with a petition before SC since there are some difficulties in implementing the verdict.

"There is no doubt that the Board will have to implement the SC verdict. But we need more time to prepare for it. More facilities have to be arranged before implementing the verdict," he said after the meeting.
TDB unanimously decided to approach SC after receiving legal opinion on this issue

The floods during the monsoon damaged several of the facilities at Pamba. Moreover, all types of constructions have been banned by the Centre. TDB had sought more forest land for development of facilities. Sabarimala has witnessed several incidents when the temple was opened twice after the verdict. All these issues will be brought before SC," said Padmakumar.

He said TDB cannot seek a time frame for implementing the order. Hence it is up to SC to decide on this. He hoped that a favourable decision will be taken by the court.

The TDB president also expressed concern over the way the police have imposed several restrictions at Sabarimala without even consulting the Board. Police had asked all the shops at Sannidhanam to close after 10pm. Similarly, they also asked to stop the distribution of appam and aravana and stop the Neyyabhishekam after 10pm.

"It is not practical to bring in any type of control on the age-old practices. Hence, the Board has already communicated to the Devaswom minister that no such restrictions can be imposed. The minister has spoken to the DGP and has asked him to withdraw all these restrictions with immediate effect," Padmakumar said.


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