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The Supreme Court asked why women cannot be allowed to enter the Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. The court said women cannot be denied entry into the temple on the grounds of equality under the Constitution. “The temple cannot prohibit entry (women), except on the basis of religion. Unless you have a constitutional right, you cannot prohibit entry. Anyway, we will examine it on February 8,” a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and N V Ramana said. It asked the government whether it was sure that women have not entered the temple premises in the last 1,500 years.
The bench was hearing a PIL, filed by the Young Lawyers Association, seeking entry for all women and girls in the Sabarimala temple which, as a practice, does not allow girls after attaining puberty to enter the premises. The argument is that the presiding deity – Lord Ayyappa – is a bachelor.