Sabarimala: The Sabarimala temple head priest Tuesday welcomed the Supreme Court's decision to hear review petitions against its judgement on the women's entry issue, in an open court on January 22, saying 'it is a big victory, this is Ayappa's victory.'
Reacting to the Constitution bench's decision to hear a batch of 50 petitions in the open court, Tantri Kandararu Rajeevaru said today's outcome was due to the blessings of Lord Ayyappa, the presiding deity of the hill shrine.
"The blessings of Lord Ayyappa and prayers of lots of devotees are behind this decision to hear the matter in the open court", a beaming Tantri told reporters.
He said the shrine had never faced such troubled times, as first the floods caused immense damage to infrastructure in an around the temple complex and then came the apex court verdict of September 28, permitting women of all ages to offer prayers, at the shrine.
"This is a big victory. We believe things will become normal. This is Ayyappa's victory", he said, adding everything would turn positive.
Devaswom minister Kadakkampally Surendran said the government was waiting for details of the judgement.
"We have said it earlier also. Whatever decision the Supreme court takes, we will abide by it", he said.
Meanwhile, BJP state President, P S Sreedharan Pillai, described the apex court decision as a "good step".
"We accept the spirit of today's Superme Court decision", he said.
The state had witnessed frenzied protests from devotees against the top court's verdict, permitting women of all ages to pray at the shrine.
Women in the 10-50 age group had been barred for centuries from visiting and offering prayers as the deity is considered a "Naishtika Brahmachari" (eternal celibate).