SC Refers Sabarimala Issue to Larger 7-Judge Bench

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Supreme Court of India

NEW DELHI (IANS) – The Supreme Court in a 3:2 verdict referred the Sabarimala review pleas to the larger bench. However, there is no stay on the September 28, 2018, judgement, which lifted the ban on the entry of women aged between 10 and 50.

According to this verdict, women of all ages can visit the shrine till larger bench decides this issue, which is actually no relief to petitioners who had moved the top court seeking a review of its previous judgement.

The Chief Justice’s majority judgement clubbed the entry of Muslim women in mosques, Parsi women to enter the tower of silence etc. with the issue of entry of women in Sabarimala temple.

However, Justice Rohinton Nariman, in dissent, disagreed with this clubbing of issues, and said these are issues for future Constitution Benches.

Justice Nariman observed that the original judgment in Sabarimala was based on a bona fide PIL, which specifically raised the issue of discrimination of women, denying them entry, for their entire period of puberty, which is actually a physiological feature.

Chief Justice observed that the individual right to practice cannot outweigh the practice of a religious group.

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