New Delhi, Nov 14, 2019: The Supreme Court today referred petitions seeking a review of its decision to allow the entry of women of all age groups in Kerala’s Sabarimala Temple to a larger seven-judge bench, as to NDTV.
Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said the question of whether women of all ages should be allowed into Sabarimala was part of a larger debate that also includes issues like allowing Muslim and Parsi women to enter religious practice.
"Fresh opportunities to be given to all parties," the Chief Justice said.
More than 60 petitions were filed after the Supreme Court verdict in September last year sparked violent protests in Kerala.
A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had reserved its decision on February 6 after hearing various parties including those seeking re-consideration of the verdict.
Will go to Sabarimala on Nov 16 when temple door opens: activist Trupti Desai
Women’s rights activist Trupti Desai, has once again vowed to offer prayers at the Sabarimala temple on November 16, the day, temple portals opens its door. Announcing her pilgrimage to the Sabarimala temple, Desai also hopes that the larger bench will not overturn the September 28 judgement, and said she will visit the shrine on Saturday.
Speaking to media, she said,’’I understand that till Court order comes, entry is open for women. No one should protest. Entry will be allowed.’’
Hailing from Kolhapur district, Desai’s family moved to Pune around 20 years ago. She was dropped out of SNDT College in Pune due to her family’s poor financial condition. Later, she completed her BA as an external student from Pune University. Her close associates say her father is a spiritual leader who runs a ’mutt’.
On November 2018, Desai had made an unsuccessful attempt to visit the Sabarimala temple in Kerala during the Mandalam-Makaravilakk pilgrim season. The temple had legal as well as religious restrictions that prevented the entry of women of menstruating age (approx. 10-50 years) since 1991 which was overturned through a historic verdict by the Supreme Court of India in October 2018.
Even though a dozen women of menstruating age group had attempted to visit the temple after the verdict came, all of them proved unsuccessful largely due to protests. Trupti was also blocked by protesters at Cochin airport. She decided to return after getting stranded inside the airport for more than 14 hours and vowed to come back again.