Amala Paul, one of India’s most popular actresses, says she was denied entry into a temple in Kerala, in a case of religious discrimination. She said that she visited the temple on Monday, but was refused a ‘darshan’, or prayer. The temple’s authorities denied her access, saying that she wasn’t a Hindu. However, she said she was surprised by the incident.
The temple in question, which is located in Ernakulam district, is a popular Shiva Parvati shrine that allows only Hindus to enter. It is also run by a temple trust. Trust officials say that they are following existing protocols. They told her that other religions had previously visited the temple. But they suggested that she visit the goddess outside the Mahadeva temple. That way she could view the deity from a distance, and take prasad.
As a Christian, Amala Paul said that she was shocked to find that she was turned away from the temple. She said that the goddess’ spirit had touched her and she felt that she should have been allowed to offer prayers. Ultimately, she was forced to do it from the road in front of the temple. While she was taking the prasad, she was unable to take photographs. However, she later posted a screenshot in the temple register, which showed that religious discrimination continues to exist in 2023.
She has also written that she hopes that it will end soon. She reportedly went to the temple to request darshan of the goddess, but was turned away by the authorities. A right-wing Hindu leader came in support of her, as did the state president of the Hindu Aikya Vedi, KP Sasikala.
Actors and celebrities often become controversial, but they are no different from ordinary citizens. Celebrities may have an opportunity to influence the world, but they are also a target for criticism. This is a particularly thorny issue in Kerala, where many temples have a strict rule of entry. In fact, last week, the Viswa Hindu Parishad took a strong stand against the entry of non-Hindus into the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, which is also in Ernakulam.
Amala Paul has been a leading actress in the Malayalam and Telugu film industries, and she has appeared in films like ‘Aadujeevitham’ and ‘Dvija’. She is due to star in a movie with Ajay Devgn, ‘Bholaa’, and is expected to play a special role in another upcoming project.
Amala Paul says that she was disappointed that her trip to a temple in Kerala was marred by a discrimination that she believes is not uncommon in the country. She said that it is time to change the attitude that exists in the country regarding people of different faiths. Until such time, she plans on visiting the temple again and requesting darshan.
The temple in question, which is in Ernakulam district, is one of the most popular Shiva Parvati shrines in the state. It is also run by a temple trustee, which has been in the spotlight since the incident.