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Sabarimala Case: Chronology Of Events On Entry Of Women Into Temple

The Supreme Court On Thursday Referred The Review Petitions Against The Verdict Allowing Entry Of Women Of All Age Groups In Kerala's Sabrimala Temple To A Larger Constitution Bench.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Fayiq Wani | Updated on: 14 Nov 2019, 01:18:01 PM
Supreme Court, by a majority of 3-2, has referred the review petitions to a larger constitution bench

New Delhi:

The Supreme Court on Thursday referred the review petitions against the verdict allowing entry of women of all age groups in Kerala's Sabrimala temple to a larger constitution bench. The top court on Thursday said restrictions on women in religious places was not limited to Sabarimala alone and was prevalent in other religions as well as it referred all review pleas to a larger seven-judge bench. Supreme Court, by a majority of 3-2, has referred the review petitions to a larger constitution bench. Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, reading the majority verdict on behalf of himself and Justices AM Khanwilkar and Indu Malhotra, said the larger bench will decide all such religious issues relating to Sabarimala, entry of women in mosques and practice of female genital mutilation in the Dawoodi Bohra community .The CJI said the endeavour of the petitioners was to revive debate on religion and faith.

Following is the chronology of events relating to the entry of women into the Sabrimala temple.

  • 1990: S Mahendran files plea in Kerala High Court seeking ban on women’s entry to temple.
  • April 5, 1991: Kerala HC upholds age-old restriction on women of a certain age-group entering the temple.
  • August 4, 2006: Indian Young Lawyers Association files plea in SC seeking to ensure entry of female devotees between the age group of 10 to 50 at the Lord Ayappa Temple at Sabarimala.
  • November 2007: LDF government of Kerala files affidavit supporting PIL questioning ban on women’s entry.
  • January 11, 2016: Two-judge bench of SC questions practice banning entry of women at the temple.
  • Feberuary 6: Congress led UDF government takes U-turn, tells SC it is duty bound to “protect the right to practice the religion of these devotees”.
  • April 11: SC says gender justice endangered by ban on women.
  • April 13: SC says tradition can’t justify ban on women’s entry.
  • April 21: Hind Navotthana Pratishtan and Narayanashrama Tapovanam files plea in SC supporting entry of women.
  • November 7: LDF government files fresh affidavit in SC saying it favoured the entry of women of all age groups.
  • October 13, 2017: SC refers the case to constitution bench.
  • October 27: Plea filed in SC for gender-equal bench to hear the case.
  • July 17, 2018: Five-judge constitution bench starts hearing the matter.
  • July 19: SC says women have fundamental right to enter the temple and questioned the rationale behind the age group.
  • July 24: SC makes it clear that the ban on entry of women would be tested on “constitutional ethos”.
  • Jul 25: Nair Service Society tells SC the celibate nature of Sabarimala temple’s presiding deity Lord Ayyappa is protected by the Constitution.
  • July 26: SC observes it can’t remain oblivious to ban on entry of women as they were barred on “physiological ground” of menstruation.
  • August 1: SC reserves verdict.
  • September 28: SC, in 4:1 verdict, allows entry of women in Sabrimala temple, says banning females’ entry into the shrine is gender discrimination and the practice violates rights of Hindu women.
  • October 8: Plea in SC by National Ayyappa Devotees Association seeks review of the judgement.
  • October 23: SC agrees to hear the review pleas on Nov 13.
  • November 13: SC agrees to hear the review pleas in open court on Jan 22, refuses to stay judgement.
  • November 14: SC declines to stay its verdict.
  • December 3: Kerala govt moves SC seeking transfer of related cases from HC to apex court.
  • January 22, 2019: SC says it may not start hearing in the case till Jan 30 as Justice Indu Malhotra, lone woman judge of the 5-member Constitution bench goes on medical leave.
  • January 31: SC to hear review pleas on Feb 6.
  • February 6: SC reserves verdict on review pleas.
  • November 14: SC refers to larger seven-judge bench for re-examining various religious issues, including entry of women into Sabarimala temple and mosques and the practice of female genital mutilation in the Dawoodi Bohra community. Five-judge bench gives 3:2 majority verdict, keep pending the review pleas.

(With PTI Inputs)

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First Published : 14 Nov 2019, 01:18:01 PM