Supreme Court to examine ban on women’s entry at Sabarimala

The bench also took note of Kerala government's recent stand and termed it as "somersault" saying, "You have filed an affidavit by taking an opposite stand. We will test it also as to whether a can take a somersault or u-turn".

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: February 13, 2016 4:54 am
Sabarimala temple, women's entry, Sabarimala temple women, Sabarimala women, women, ban, entry ban, menstrual age, supreme court, SC Sabarimala temple, Bhagwad Gita, Vedas, Upanishads, india news Sabarimala: Ayyappa devotees throng at Sannidanam in Sabarimala. PTI Photo

The Supreme Court Friday questioned the practice of banning women from Kerala’s Sabarimala temple, and wondered if man-made customs can prescribe such prohibition when “the God does not discriminate between men and women”.

A bench led by Justice Dipak Misra said it would examine the issue of ban on entry of women of menstrual age in the temple on “constitutional parameters”, and adjudge whether this practice was “intricately fundamental” to religious customs and hence cannot be interfered with.

“The God does not discriminate between men and women, so why should there be gender discrimination in the premises of the temple,” observed the bench as it quoted from a mythological story about Sati Anusuya, who had turned Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh into children.

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“How can you stop the mother from entering the temple?” it asked, adding that neither the Vedas nor Upanishads discriminated on the basis of gender.

Senior advocate K K Venugopal, appearing for the Travancore Devaswom Board, sought six weeks for filing evidence, including documents and ancient scriptures, on the issue, and said the practice of prohibiting women of menstrual age in Sabarimala was being followed for centuries.

The bench also termed Kerala government’s recent stand a “somersault.” The state government, in its latest affidavit, has said the prohibition of women is a matter of religion and it is duty-bound to “protect the right to practice the religion of these devotees”. But in its previous affidavit, it had supported a PIL seeking women’s entry in Sabarimala.

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  1. J
    Jai Kumar
    Feb 12, 2016 at 4:40 pm
    Now imagine if this was an issue to do with minority religious issues. Who all would be in arms........
    1. A
      adithya dwivedi
      Feb 21, 2016 at 3:46 pm
      as a ayyappa devotte iam saying that iam not at all happy with supreme court's decision please respect the rules and regulations of sabarimala temple swamyie saranam ayyappa
      1. A
        Feb 12, 2016 at 3:32 pm
        There is a limit to verything some things are left to religion, why do women insist on going to that particular temple. Supreme court has better things to cncentrate on like pendig suits all over india.
        1. A
          Feb 12, 2016 at 5:20 pm
          And present Him before the public
          1. A
            Feb 12, 2016 at 5:53 pm
            God does not discriminate OK judges of SC which God says that cases can go on for years and years. Justice dela is justice denied. Judges must stop interfering in religious matters but first set its house in order
            1. A
              Feb 12, 2016 at 5:48 pm
              SC shouldn't interfere in religious matters there are so many cases pending why the supreme Court not taking steps to see no cases are pending and no steps are taken to give sppedy justice.
              1. G
                G M
                Feb 12, 2016 at 7:44 pm
                May be time has come for Hindu faith to devise a personal law to the satisfaction of Hindu faith just like Muslim law. Widow's prevention from becoming Sati and marriage of wedow are some welcome reforms. I this issue will also be resolved in near future.
                1. K
                  Apr 13, 2016 at 9:50 pm
                  For your kind information, menstruating women stay away from entering temples and performing pujas on their own. I think SC has better things than this to concentrate and make a good research before ping on a judgment. Definitely, I prefer religious faith over is thousands of years old and other one is hardly 66 years old..
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