Bindu Ammini, one of the two women who previously entered the Sabarimala temple on January 2 this year,  was attacked by Sabarimala devotees with chilly/pepper spray while she accompanied women's rights activist Trupti Desai on Tuesday, November 26. After a brief verbal duel, Bindu was taken out by the police from the Kochi City Police Commissioner's office, for medical attention.

Bindu Ammini
Image: Bindu Ammini attacked with pepper spray enroute to the Sabarimala shrine.

Hearing about the arrival of Trupti Desai along with four other activists, a large group of Sabarimala devotees gathered and started to sing Sabarimala hymns promising not to allow her to pray at the temple.

Trupti Desai arrived at the Kochi airport early on Tuesday, November 26 enroute to Sabarimala temple which sparked off protests by Lord Ayyappa devotees. Desai has been kept at the Kochi City Police Commissioners office. Desai arrived with four other activists at the airport around 5 a.m. and has been in discussion with the top police officers here requesting police protection to reach the temple.

Trupti Desai
Trupti DesaiANI

We'll visit the temple today on Constitution Day. Neither state government nor police can stop us from visiting the temple. Whether we get security or not we will visit the temple today. - Trupti Desai, Women's rights activist

The Sabarimala Verdict 

  • Supreme Court gave a 3:2 verdict on the Sabarimala issue.
  • Referred the Sabarimala review pleas to a larger seven-judge bench.
  • It maintained that it has not stayed its September 28, 2018 order allowing women of all ages to enter the temple. 
  • Pinarayi Vijayan-led Left government made its position clear that it will not make any effort to ensure the entry of women into the temple to pray.
Indian Hindu devotees are pictured at the Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala in the southern state of Kerala on November 16, 2018. - Indian police mounted a major security operation on November 16 to prevent hardliners blocking women from entering one of Hinduism's holiest shrines despite a court order.ARUN SANKAR/AFP/Getty Images

The tradition of the temple has been to ban the entry of women in the age group between 10 to 50. The two-month-long Sabarimala festival season began on November 17 and since seven women in the banned age group — all from outside Kerala who sought 'darshan' were not allowed entry to the temple by the police. Devotees returning after praying at the temple, when they heard about Desai's presence, turned furious and vowed to sacrifice their lives to protect the temple traditions.

"We will not allow anyone to break the traditions of this temple. All these activists are trying to destroy the sanctity of this hallowed temple," said angry pilgrims. Incidentally in the last season, Desai along with her friends failed to come out of the Kochi airport following a massive protest from right-wing activists.

(With inputs from wires)