Kochi: The High Court of Kerala on Thursday criticised the Kerala government for establishing a virtual queue system for Sabarimala pilgrims.
"What is the role of the government in managing the functions of a temple?" the High Court asked.
A report in Live Law has quoted the court order, which criticises the LDF government for overriding the Travancore Devaswom Board in the matter.
"The Board, being a trustee, should manage all the affairs of Sabarimala like in the case of all other temples," the court observed.
The state government had claimed that the system was put in place to avoid crowding considering the prevailing COVID-19 situation in Kerala.
According to Live Law, the state government said in the court that the virtual queue system had been in place since 2011 and over 75 lakh pilgrims have utilised it.
The state government has been asked to respond by Tuesday.
Congress, the major opposition party in the state, had demanded that the government do away with the system. Former Leader of the Opposition, Ramesh Chennithala, had dubbed it 'unscientific'.
Earlier this month, the government had decided to permit upto 25,000 pilgrims a day to the hill shrine through the virtual queue system.
It was decided to open the temple for Thulam month pooja this week. However, the heavy rains and rising river water levels had forced the government to postpone the pilgrimage.