Ernakulam: Gender activist Trupti Desai will return from Kochi on Friday night, unable to break the impasse with protestors over women’s entry into the Sabarimala shrine.

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In a phone interview from inside Kochi airport, where she and six other colleagues have been stuck since early morning owing to protests, Desai said the police had pleaded helplessness.

“About 20 minutes ago we had a meeting with police officials. They said this is becoming a law and order situation. People who are outside can come inside and attack us," she said. “They said that even if they give us protection we won’t be able to reach the temple given the size of the protests. They also said that the entire state will erupt in violence if we don’t drop our plan. So they have asked to reconsider our plan, and probably come back next time with more arrangements in place," said Desai.

A person close to her said that she would return on Friday. However, Desai declined to reveal her final plans for the time being.

“We told them (the police) that we will discuss it and decide by 6.30 pm," she said.

Desai landed in Kochi airport in an Indigo flight at 4.45 am on Friday, on her to way to visit the Sabarimala temple. The temple has a ritualistic ban for menstrual age women which, despite being struck down as discriminatory by the Supreme Court recently, has many takers in Kerala, who have taken to the streets to uphold the ban.

On her arrival, the protestors blocked the airport gate, not allowing her to come out. She also could not hire a taxi to take her from the airport to the shrine.

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