Thiruvananthapuram: Kanakadurga, who became the first woman of menstruating age to offer prayers at the Sabarimala temple, was allegedly attacked by her mother-in-law after she returned home on Tuesday morning.
According to initial reports, the 44-year-old was hit by her mother-in-law on the head, following which she was taken to Perinthalmanna hospital. The woman had returned home under police protection and eight personnel were deployed outside, but the incident occurred inside her residence.
Speaking to News18 from Perinthalmanna hospital, Kanakadurga said, “I reached home at around 7 am. I entered the hall as the door was already open. When my mother-in-law knew it was me, she came from kitchen with a wooden stick and started attacking me.”
“She said that I've slept with many others and they didn't want to be at that house and started abusing me. They attacked me some 10-12 times and hit my head as well. I couldn't even stand properly, still they dragged me out and closed the door,” she added. “I didn't do anything to her, I didn't even try to stop them when I was being beaten.”
Forty-two-year-old college lecturer Bindhu and Kanakadurga created history on January 2 by becoming the first woman of menstruating age to offer prayers at the Sabarimala temple after the Supreme Court overturned a centuries-old traditional ban last year.
The duo had entered the temple at 3:38 am, a day after over 35 lakh women stood shoulder-to-shoulder across the national highways in Kerala, creating a 620 km-long human 'wall' from the northern end of Kasaragod to the southern tip in Thiruvananthapuram as part of the state-sponsored initiative to uphold gender equality.
As the news spread like wildfire from the hill shrine, protests erupted at several places, with Hindu right-wing activists blocking highways and forcing closure of shops and markets. The ruling CPI(M)'s offices were vandalised at several places causing tension.
People from media were also attacked by BJP activists in front of the secretariat, officials said.
Sabarimala Karma Samithi, an umbrella organisation of various pro-Hindutva groups, spearheading protests against the Supreme Court's September 28 verdict, and Antarrashtriya Hindu Parishad (AHP), held a state-wide shutdown, while the Congress-led UDF observed a "black day".