, 40 tweets, 17 min read Read on Twitter
As we are nearing the 1st anniversary of the great resistance put up by Hindus in #Sabarimala, I have decided to put out a thread to make people know abt the unsung heroes who had a greater role to play in defending the sanctity of Ayyappa's abode.
After the success of #ReadytoWait movement in social media, prominent members of the movement in @kuvalayamala and @shilpamdas decided to join the Supreme court case for showing the perspective of Ayyappa devotees
.@Kuvalayamala who was a good friend of mine for about a year at that point of time approached me for help in joining the case. As a result, @Ravilochanan86 and myself brought together a group of like minded indivduals and formed @People4Dharma
After forming the organization, finding a good lawyer who will put forth the perspective of Ayyappa devotees in a not so favorable environment was the next challenge. We tried to get in touch with a bunch of lawyer through common contacts for a few weeks.
We had about 6 weeks before the next hearing of the case at the time when we started the hunt for a good lawyer. The lack of success in the first 2 weeks rattled us a bit creating doubts in our minds regarding our chances of entering the case
One fine day in the 3rd week when i was in Uttar Guruvayurappan temple of Nanganallur, @Kuvalayamala messaged me about her conversation with @/thedelhilawyer wherein he had recommended her to get in touch with @jsaideepak
I saw this message of hers immediately aft having darshan of sayaraksha deeparadana at the temple and was convinced that this was a sign from the two widely cherished Appans of Kerala.
Aft having a discussion with other members of @People4Dharma and arriving at a consensus, we decided that @jsaideepak will be our advocate. But the next challenge for us was to get his contact as none of us had personal contact with him prior to these events
Fortunately by the grace of Ayyappa, @Suhas_AN who had previously interacted with @jsaideepak stepped in at that point of time and gave us his mobile number.
I immediately contacted @jsaideepak who agreed to do the case free of cost and introduced us to AOR @suvidutt for filing the case.
Fortunately for a new bunch of people like us who had no strong financial means to match the expensive litigation business at that point of time even @suvidutt agreed to fight this battle for Ayyappa without charging a single penny.
As a result, we were party to the case within 3 weeks aft this conversation and started preparing for our first hearing on Nov 8, 2016
As expected we had to deal with the change in stance of the Kerala govt during this hearing as the newly elected @CPIMKerala govt decided to change the affidavit filed by previous @INCKerala govt and support the entry of women aged bet 10-50 yrs in #Sabarimala
However the next hearing in February 2017 went completely in our favor as the arguments presented by various parties convinced Justice Misra to transfer this matter to the constitution bench
After this order of Justice Misra, the case was taken up for hearing for about 15 months till July 2018. By this time, @indiccollective was formed as a result of @Kuvalayamala's meeting with @jsaideepak in Delhi.
The new organization called @indiccollective was formed to take up matters of national and cultural importance like national security, temple autonomy, free speech and protection of heritage structures and environment
Apart from this, formation of @indiccollective also introduced @Kuvalayamala, @Ravilochanan86 and myself to a bunch of like minded and talented people like @trramesh, @Infinitchy and @ShreehariK. All of us together were preparing for this fight to protect Ayyappa's abode
As the constitution bench started hearing the case in July 2018, the extremely intelligent trio of @trramesh, @jsaideepak and @Ravilochanan86 brought in extraordinary arguments in favor of fundamental religious and denonimational rights which were under threat through this case
After collaborating various legal arguments brought forth mainly by this trio along with a few brilliant points given by other members, our written arguments to be presented at the court were framed by @jsaideepak.
As I was going through this written submissions prepared by @jsaideepak, my dear friend @MohitPDaga who was having dinner with me at that point of time came up with the brilliant argument of deity's (ayyappa's) right to practice religion (bramhacharya)
As a result, our legal team under @jsaideepak sat down once again with @trramesh and @Ravilochanan86 to reframe our written submission for including this argument on deity's rights by citing various other relevant judgments
As we were thus preparing our arguments for the case, we noticed that the other side was constantly taking up the arguments of "Ayyappa never asked women to be kept away from his temple" and "no religion promotes discrimination on the basis of gender"
For the discrimination on the basis of gender argument, @Ravilochanan86 came up with various scriptural references which prevented a person taking up the vrata of Naishtika Brahmacharya like Ayyappa from seeing members of opposite sex in their reproductive age
And as a reply to the Ayyappan not asking women to be kept away argument our auditor @Venkattss, who was introduced to us by @Gopalee67 and @zeneraalstuff at a Sathsamhita workshop, brought out references from Sabarimala's sthala purana text called Bhuthanatha Upakhyanam
The discovery of this text was a blessing of Ayyappan as myself and @Ravilochanan86 were told by members of various traditional illams in Kerala that this text was lost.
When we were direly in need of a serious argument to counter this sham promoted by left liberals, @Venkattss found this text at the house of an old learned scholar in Chennai
In that sthala purana text, Bhuthanathan (Ayyappan) clearly tells that he is a Naishtika Brahmachari and hence he cannot see members of opposite sex in their reproductive age. With this we were even able to thrash this popular Ayyappan didnt say so argument of the opposite side
Thus we finally prepared a well armed written submission to take on every single point presented by the opposite side and were waiting for our chance to argue.
After hearing the arguments presented by the opposite side, the Supreme court bench started hearing the side favoring traditions. @DrAMSinghvi was the first to argue on behalf of TDB
After him, Senior Counsel K Parasaran started his submission on behalf of Nair Service Society. He was like Bhishma Pitamaha on the first day of Mahabharata during his submission
He pointed out everything from the traditionally elevated status enjoyed by women in Kerala to the locus standi of non devotees demanding entry and completely destroyed the false arguments demanding equal rights for women in the temple.
As a constitutional expert whose age was equal to the experience of judges hearing the case, he pointed out the protection enjoyed by our religious rituals & practices and ended his submissions by asking the court to dismiss the petition seeking entry of women aged bet 10-50 yrs
After Sr Adv K Parasaran, Senior Advocates Radhakrishnan and Giri presented their arguments on behalf of @PandalaKottaram and Tantri (Chief priest) of Sabarimala. Post this, @jsaideepak commenced his submissions on behalf of @People4Dharma and Delhi based NGO Chetna
Initially Justice Misra gave 10 mins for @jsaideepak to make his submissions as the court had to rise for lunch. He began his argument with a simple statement, "The temple has asserted its rights, women have asserted their rights but no one has asserted the rights of the deity"
Aft confidently commencing his submission with @MohitPDaga's point on deity's rights, the arguments presented by @jsaideepak in the next five minutes convinced the bench to give him more time after lunch
As @jsaideepak resumed his submissions post lunch, he was appreciated for his impressive arguments by Justice Misra. Justice Nariman thanked him for his instructive arguments as he completed his submission at the time when court rose for the day after arguing for more than 2 hrs
Our friends who saw him argue on that day were totally awestruck and congratulated us for choosing the best person for the case.
While various journalists and other eminent personalities were going behind him for interview immediately aft he ended his submissions, @jsaideepak texted us saying that he went into a trance while arguing and felt like going to a temple for letting out his emotions
It was an emotional day for each and everyone of us. We thanked each other for their contribution which led to this impressive show of @jsaideepak thus fulfilling our motive of presenting the perspective of devotees in the Supreme Court
The written submissions*
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