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Denied permission by left controlled temple, ex-Muslim dancer in Kerala gets VHP invite to perform in their temple 

- March 29, 2022

Thiruvananthapuram, March 29 (BPNS)

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) will be inviting Bharathanatyam dancer Mansiya. V.P to Pavakkulam temple, Kochi controlled by it. The Pavakkulam temple is managed by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and is one of the old temples of Kochi in Kerala. The office-bearers of the VHP while speaking to media persons at Kochi said that the organization would extend all protection to Mansiya and would invite her to perform at the Pavakkulam temple but the date and time would be announced later.

Mansiya the Bharathanatyam exponent and Ph.D. scholar was denied permission to dance at the famous Koodalmanikyam temple in Iringalakkuda on April 21 as she was not a practicing Hindu.

 Incidentally, the Koodalmanikyam temple is controlled by the left government of Kerala.

There has been outrage in several quarters over the treatment meted out to Mansiya, by the management of the Left government-controlled temple.

Senior Congress leader and Member of Parliament from Thiruvananthapuram, Dr. Shashi Tharoor while speaking to media persons in New Delhi said that the temple not allowing an atheist dancer to perform in the temple was not acceptable.

 He said that the temple Chairman Pradeep Menon has said that the decision was in keeping with the ‘ existing tradition at the temple’. Tharoor said that traditions change with times and that it was the tradition at every temple to deny Dalits entry a century ago but that is not the situation at present.

BJP local leadership also expressed support to Mansiya and party Iringalakkuda mandalam president, T.K. Shaiju while speaking to BPNS said, “The decision of the temple not to allow Mansiya to perform within the premises is unfortunate and this has challenged the secular principles of the constitution.”

It is to be noted that the famous Koodalmanikyam temple in Iringalakkuda as part of its annual festival was conducting the ten-day National Dance and Music Festival from April 16 to 25 and Mansiya’s dance was charted on April 21.

Mansiya while speaking to BPNS said,” On Sunday an official from the temple called me and informed me that I will not be able to perform as I was not a Hindu.”

The trained Bharathanatyam dancer was born a Muslim and she had faced stiff resistance from the Muslim clergy while she was learning dance along with her sister. Her mother Amina and father Alavikutty, however, stood strongly with the daughters. Later when Amina passed away due to cancer, the clerics denied burial in the mosque graveyard and this led to Mansiya leaving the religion.

She later married a vocalist, Shyam Kalyan who is a practicing Hindu.

Mansiya told IANS that the Koodalmanikyam temple authorities asked her why she had not converted to Hinduism after marrying a Hindu to which she answered that she is not believing in any religion and her husband’s family also did not put any pressure on her.

The Left government of Kerala which has been vocal on the secular credentials of the society has egg on its face after a government controlled temple prevented an artist from performing within the temple as she was not a practicing Hindu.