Women Cannot be Stopped From Entering Sabarimala: Supreme Court

Supreme Court asks why women are not allowed inside the Sabarimala temple, as it violates freedom of expression.

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Devotees wait to enter the Sabarimala. (Photo Courtesy: The News Minute)

The Supreme Court has asked why women should not be allowed to enter Sabarimala temple.

Hearing arguments in a ten year old case filed by the Young Lawyers Association, the apex court asked if the government was sure that women had not entered the temple in the last 1,500 years. The court observed that according to the Indian constitution, women cannot be disallowed.

The previous LDF government had told the court that it was not against women entering Sabarimala. The current UDF government had, however, asked the court for permission to file a new petition in the case.

The Sabarimala temple in Kerala does not allow post-pubescent girls to enter the premises. Women who have crossed menopause are however allowed.

The temple was in a controversy recently after the Travancore Devasom Board Chairman Prayar Gopalakrishnan said that women will be allowed into the temple after passing through a machine to scan impurity.

Entry to a place of worship could be restricted only by religious beliefs and not by gender, the court said.

The next hearing on this matter is on 8 February.

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