Pathanamthitta: In an attempt to end the unrest in Sabarimala, the Travancore Devaswom Board has decided to strengthen the review petitions submitted before the Supreme Court that lifted the ban on entry of women of menstruating age into the shrine. Devaswom board president A Padmakumar said to the media on Friday, “We want to end this standoff.”

“We have decided to appeal against the Supreme Court verdict that allowed women of all age groups to enter Sabarimala temple,” Padmakumar said according to ANI.

However, another media report made a claim to the contrary, quoting Padmakumar. "The board need not file a petition in the apex court since we are party to the 25 review petitions filed by different persons. We can state our stand in those hearings," The New Indian Express quoted the board president as saying.

Interestingly, while advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, a national spokesperson of the Congress, represents the board at the apex court, Padmakumar is a member of the ruling party of Kerala, the CPI(M).

Padmakumar said he would request chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan to call a meeting with all stakeholders in view of the situation getting "serious". The board has decided to approach the Supreme Court with a detailed report in consultation with legal experts.

"We want peace... we don't want Sabarimala to be a protest site...," the board president said claiming that the issue has to be resolved in an amicable manner.

As per the Travancore Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act of 1950, the Travancore Devaswom Board is one of the oldest ones existing as an autonomous body. This board is also a successor to Travancore Royal Devaswom Commission.

When the British took control of Travancore, all temples managed by communities and families (movable and immovable assets included) were usurped. These places of worship came under the control of a British resident in charge of the institution. The board's most important temple is this shrine — Sabarimala.