Larger constitution bench of Supreme Court to Sabarimala review petitions in January

ANI New Delhi, India Dec 21, 2019, 11.11 PM(IST)

File photo: Supreme Court of India. Photograph:( ANI )

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The top court had last year allowed girls and women of all age groups to visit the Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala in Kerala, following which a batch of review petitions was filed.

The Sabarimala review petitions will be now heard by a seven-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court in January 2020.

On December 13, the Supreme Court had said that its 2018 order on Sabarimala temple issue was "not final" as the matter is pending before a seven-judge bench, which, it had said, will be constituted soon.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of India S A Bobde had made these observations while passing an order on a petition filed by two activists -- Bindu Ammini and Fathima A S -- seeking safe passage for women inside the shrine.

"There is a judgment [allowing women entry] in the Sabarimala temple, but it is equally true that the issue has been referred to a larger Bench. We do not want any violence," the court had observed.

The apex court, however, granted police protection to the two activists. In November, a man had sprayed chili and pepper on Bindu's face when she was on her way to Sabarimala temple.

Fathima had also tried to enter the shrine. The apex court refused to pass any other order in connection to the matter.

The top court had last year allowed girls and women of all age groups to visit the Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala in Kerala, following which a batch of review petitions was filed.

Allowing their review petitions, the court had last month referred the matter to a seven-judge bench.