Govt likely to accept tantri's decision not to allow devotees enter Sabarimala temple
Thiruvananthapuram: The government is likely to accept the request of Tantri Kandaru Mahesh Mohanaru not to allow devotees in Sabarimala temple when it opens for monthly rituals in Mithunam month and that the festival should be postponed. The Tantri had forwarded a letter to the Travancore Devaswom Board the other day requesting not to allow devotees enter the temple.
The government decided that darshan can be stopped if the tantri is firm on his stand that devotees should not be allowed to enter the temple during the monthly rituals. The final decision in this regard will be taken by 11 am on Thursday after a meeting under the leadership of Devaswom minister. The Tantri put forward the suggestion when the temple was about to be opened on Sunday.
The Tantri requested in the letter addressed to the Devaswom Commissioner that the presence of devotees should be avoided considering the COVID threat. The festival which falls on June 19 should be postponed as there should be some people including the assistants in rituals. In case any of them is confirmed with the disease, all of them should be quarantined. The head priests are not supposed to leave the hills as per tradition.
"The board had asked to conduct the festival and informed that June 19 is a good day. Then we agreed as the situation was favourable. They had asked to withdraw the decision if the condition worsens," tantri said. Meanwhile, Devaswom Board president N Vasu said that tantri took a decision in this regard after a lot of delay. The decision to admit devotees was taken with the consent of tantris and they did not convey any disagreement then , he added.
The Devaswom Board allowed devotees to enter temples as the central government granted permission to open worship centres. This decision was taken when COVID outbreak intensified. If the state did not agree to this even after the Centre allowed, the consequences could have been different, Vasu said.
Meanwhile, Ayyappa Seva Samajam is going to approach the high court requesting not to open the Sabarimala temple right now. They are approaching the court asking to implement the tantri's decision during the COVID outbreak.