Even as the Kerala government informed the Supreme Court that it was considering bringing in a legislation for Sabarimala Ayyappa temple administration, it is unlikely to have any bearing on the temple rituals or beliefs, like the entry of women.
The Kerala government’s counsel submitted before the Supreme Court last week that the state was considering a separate legislation over the administration of the Sabarimala temple. This was in connection with a petition filed by a member of the Pandalam Palace in Kerala, the erstwhile custodians of the Sabarimala temple.
A Padmakumar, the president of the Travancore Devaswom Board, which manages the temple now, and Kerala Devaswom Minister Kadakampally Surendran maintained that they were in the dark about such moves.
However, government sources told DH that there was a proposal to have a separate administrative set up for the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple considering the huge turnout of pilgrims and the need for strengthening the temple infrastructure. A three-member delegation of senior official of Kerala government had also visited Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams last year to explore the possibility of Tirupati model at Sabarimala.
The Travancore Devaswom Board may not favour losing control over Sabarimala as it is the major source of income for the board that manages about 1,200 temples.