Kozhikode: Activists are planning to rally support for model and activist Rehana Fathima who was jailed soon after her failed attempt to visit Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. On December 14, a protest gathering would be organised in Kozhikode and on December 15, a similar gathering would be organised in Ernakulam by the 'Free Rehana Fathima Action Council'. A similar gathering was held in Thrissur on December 10, International Human Rights Day.
Rehana was arrested for allegedly posting controversial remarks on Ayyappa devotees and Sabarimala on social media. She moved the Kerala High Court on Monday seeking bail. She submitted that the Constitution guaranteed freedom of speech and she should be granted bail "in the interest of justice".
Pathnamthitta Police registered a case punishable under Section 295A of the Indian Penal Code (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs). She was alleged to have posted some pictures on her Facebook account and posted her opinion which hurt the religious sentiments of Ayyappa devotees.
However, the activists in the state feels that she has been made a victim of political agenda, and their hidden intention was to keep her in jail until the Mandalakaalam (the peak Sabarimala pilgrimage season) is over.
The convention will be attended by Anweshi president K Ajitha, Viji Penkoott as well as writers and activists P Geetha and MG Mallika.
Rehana, a BSNL employee, was arrested from her office on November 27 and remanded to judicial custody. Her bail plea was rejected by the judicial magistrate court at Pathnamthitta earlier. While the state government has decided to implement a Supreme Court verdict permitting women of all age groups to offer prayers at the Sabarimala temple, the Congress-led UDF and the BJP have said they are with the believers and against the entry of young women.