Malayalam actor Kollam Thulasi’s threat has exposed how badly patriarchy wants to keep women outside the Sabarimala temple. According to The Indian Express, Thulasi was attending an event organised by temple stakeholders and the BJP-led agitators. It was there that he said that women who enter the Sabarimala temple should be “torn into two pieces.” He further said, “One portion should be thrown to Delhi and another to the room of the chief minister.”

It is amusing men in power in our country can still get away with spewing such violent threats from an open platform. Is patriarchal mindset in our society so insecure, that it resorts to instigating violence, to merely prevent women from entering a temple? And the Supreme Court’s words do not deserve any respect from these people? Are decrepit stigmas to be weaponised to restrict women in India, despite them having the backing of the highest court in the country?

Why is our liberation so intimidating to patriarchy?

For centuries women have endured period untouchability. It has prevented us from entering places of worship during those five days of the month.

In Sabarimala too, the menstruating age bracket was used to keep women outside of the temple. It took so many years for people to finally realise that this was unfair. But alas, the deep-rooted patriarchy in the minds of people like Kollam cannot digest women’s liberation from outdated dictates. They still wear the blinkers of misogyny which prevents them from seeing any logic.

SOME TAKEAWAY

  • Malayalam actor Kollam Thulasi has recently said that women who enter the Sabarimala temple should be “torn into two pieces”.
  • It is amusing how men in power in our country can still get away with spewing such violent threats from an open platform.
  • In light of these comments if a woman faces violence for entering Sabarimala, will anyone dare to hold him accountable?
  • Also, fear of consequences prevents us from holding powerful men like Thulasi accountable for their actions and words. 

Kollam has threatened to rip bodies of women into two, if they dare to enter Sabarimala, in a public gathering. Yet, there is no action against him, for instigating violence against women. In light of these comments if a woman faces violence for entering Sabarimala, will anyone dare to hold him accountable? It is not possible for women to find full acceptance as an equal gender in society, until these men learn to control their tongues. Such people are enablers of misogyny, who fuel the fear of losing cultural values among people.

It is sad that the word of the Apex Court has no value for people opposing entry of women in Sabarimala.

They choose to adhere to sexist traditions, instead of accepting the word of the court. Issuing violent threats here is the last resort, because everything else has failed. It is like they are scrambling to regain the footing they have lost. The ultimate act of resistance when facing a losing battle.

We seriously hope authorities take strict legal action against Thulasi for inciting violence. For misleading a large crowd into openly disobeying the orders of the highest court in our country. How else can we instil some civic sense among people? How else can we put across the point that this debate is done and dusted with, and that perhaps it is time to open your minds and hearts and let women inside Sabarimala without resistance. Or is it too much to ask for too soon? We may have broken free legally, but liberation from a certain outlook, is yet to happen.

Picture Credit : The Hindu

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Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section.  The views expressed are the author’s own

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