Constitution bench to decide if women can enter Sabarimala temple

RSTV Bureau
File Photo of Supreme Court of India building in New Delhi.

File Photo of Supreme Court of India building in New Delhi.

The Supreme Court has referred to its constitution bench the matter pertaining to a ban on the entry of women into the Sabarimala temple in Kerala.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief justice Dipak Misra framed several questions to be dealt with by the constitution bench, including whether the temple can restrict women’s entry.

The apex court also framed a question whether restricting the entry of women at the temple was violative of their rights under the Constitution.

It said the constitution bench will also deal with the question whether this practice amounted to discrimination against the women.

On February 20, the court had reserved its order on whether to refer the matter to a constitution bench.

The management of the Sabarimala temple had earlier told the apex court that the ban on entry of women aged between 10 and 50 years was because they cannot maintain “purity” on account of menstruation.

The court is hearing a plea challenging the practice of banning entry of such women in the temple.

On November 7 last year, the Kerala government had informed the apex court that it favoured the entry of women of all age groups in the historic temple.

Initially, the LDF government had taken a progressive stand in 2007 by favouring women’s entry into the temple, which was over-turned by the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) dispensation later.

(With inputs from PTI)