Kochi (Kerala) [India], July 28 (ANI): The Kerala High Court on Wednesday refused to stay the notification issued by the Travancore Devaswom Board which stipulates that only 'Malayala Brahmins' alone are entitled to apply for the post of 'Melsanthis' (head priests) in Sabarimala and Malikappuram temples.
A Division Bench of Justice CT Ravikumar and Justice Murali Purushothaman directed the Travancore Devaswom Board to file counter-affidavits and posted a batch of petitions challenging the notification for August 12 for the next hearing.
A batch of petitions came before the bench challenging the notification. One such petition filed by Sijith TL and Vijeesh PR through advocate TR Rajesh was seeking a direction to set aside the notification.
The petition contended that the prescription in the notification to the effect that only "Malayala Brahmin" of Kerala origin alone is entitled to apply for being appointed as 'Melsanthi' in Sabarimala and Malikappuram Temples is violative of their fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 14, 15 and 16 of the Constitution of India.
"The term 'Malayala Brahmin' denotes the caste of a person which is by birth. Therefore, by prescribing a qualification from a particular caste, the petitioners are discriminated against and are kept away from the mainstream to compete for the post of Melsanthis in Sabarimala and Malikappuram Temples," the plea said. (ANI)