Following the Supreme Court decision on Shani Shingnapur Temple Trust to lift up the ban on women from entering the sanctum Sanctorum, celebrated Baba Balak Nath Trust in Himachal’s Hamirpur district has decided to permit the women in the cave of ‘Baba ji’.
Baba Balak Nath Temple Trust was formed in January 16, 1987 with the pious cave shrine nested on mighty Dhaulagiri hills on the border of Hamirpur and Bilaspur districts. It is under the control of the Government and according to its age-old custom, ladies are not permitted to enter the cave.
They used to pay obeisance and have ‘Darshan’ from a platform, a couple of meters far from the main cave until now. But after the Supreme Court has lifted up the restriction on women to enter the temple, now they are eligible of going inside the cave and worship ‘Babaji’ like men.
The local people never stood against this tradition and was acceptable to the fact that women cannot go inside the cave. It is believed that since Babaji was a Brahmachari, local people favored that ladies ought not to go near him and that turned into a convention which is taken after till date.
It is assumed that Baba Balak Nath used to herd mother gem’s cows in Shahtalai and after that he took up a life of celibacy. He meditated gravely in the cave Deotsidh, and being a celibate, he used to stay far from women. Therefore, women avoided going in the cave of the shrine.
The sacred shrine is venerated widely in north India and millions of devotees visit Deotsidh Baba every year, especially during Navratri. Proper facilities for accommodation, water, toilet and food are provided by the Government during top seasons.
The Temple trust runs under the Government of Himachal Pradesh since its establishment, and all activities of the temple is overseen and controlled by Deputy commissioner of Hamirpur.
Baba Balak Nath Temple Trust also looks over a degree college, Senior Secondary School, a model school and running a Sanskrit college. Also, the trust is giving the salaries to the teaching and non-teaching staff of these institutions. There are also a temple trust inn and shops. The temple is under the supervision of more than one hundred employees.
……..a rookie journalist