Karnataka: A day for women to rejoice says Jayamala

Bengaluru: Thirty-two years after she claimed to have entered the sanctum sanctorum of Ayyappa Swamy temple at Sabarimala, actress and now Minister for Kannada and Culture and Women and Child Development Jayamala on Friday hailed the Supreme Court verdict, which upheld the right of women of all ages to worship in places of their choice.

She said, “It is a historic judgement, and a day every woman and those who support the cause of women should celebrate. I have time and again reiterated that there is no such thing as separate God for men and women. He is equal to one and all, and it has been stressed in our Constitution too. Now that the judiciary has upheld the rights of women, it is a moment for celebration.”

She said that it was never a matter of religion, but a matter of right. “Women have all the right to visit temples and pray to the Almighty,” she said.

She had revealed that she was at the temple in 1986 to seek Lord Ayyappa's blessings as she was going through a tough phase in her life. She shocked the devotees in 2006, saying that she had accidentally touched the idol of Lord Ayyappa inside the sanctum sanctorum when she was pushed by a crowd. Her revelations had led to legal cases against her.

She said, “I have time and again reiterated that I believe in the Constitution and judiciary,, both of which have been safeguarding the interests of women. I believe in them, as much I believe in Him. I respect the verdict of the Supreme Court. There cannot be a separate law for men and women. 

It is the same for all, and my trust has remained intact.”

On visiting the temple again, she said, “I never treated it as a challenge. God is my strongest belief in life with whom I share a trust. He has blessed me with everything in my life, from being an ordinary person to rising to this level and giving me an opportunity to serve the people. I am here because of Him. If He wishes me back, He will make sure I am there for His blessings."

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