A nine-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court will begin hearing, from January 13, the review petitions against its verdict allowing entry of women of all ages in Kerala’s Sabarimala temple clubbed with the issues of entry of women in Muslim and Parsi places of worship.
The apex court issued notice on Monday in connection with the listing of the pleas filed by the Indian Young Lawyers Association seeking review of the court’s 2018 judgement allowing women and girls of all ages to enter the Sabarimala temple. The notice said: “Take notice that the following matters will be listed for hearing before a Nine Judges Constitution Bench commencing from Monday the 13th January, 2020.”
A five-judge bench had, in a 3:2 majority verdict on November 14, had referred to a seven-judge bench the pleas seeking review of the 2018 judgement. The top court clubbed the restrictions faced by Muslim women in connection with the entry into mosques and dargahs and Parsi women, married to non-Parsi men, being discriminated from entering the Fire Temple.
The majority verdict noted that it is essential to evolve a judicial policy to do “substantial and complete justice”.
The court, in the majority judgement, observed that the issues surrounding the constitutional validity of religious practices, which discriminate against women specifically in connection with their entry into a place of worship were not limited to the Sabarimala temple case.