The Nine Judge bench of the Supreme Court on 13th January, 2020 said that it’ll hear various petitions concerning the rights of women across religion with the Sabarimala issue, and asked the senior councils to convene meeting to decide upon the issues. The councils are asked to meet on January 17th to decide upon the issues and also the asked the Secretary General of the Supreme Court to attend the meeting for proper coordination.
A review petition was filed against the 2018 Sabarimala Judgment, which ordered against the said practice in Sabarimala which restricted women of menstrual age to enter the Temple premise. The review petition was heard by a five judge bench of the Supreme Court and on 14th November, 2019 through a reference order passed by the five judge bench it was referred to a larger bench.
- The bench is of the opinion that the hearing will assume significance not only to the Sabarimala issue, but to all discriminatory practices against women across religion. Entry of Muslim women in Mosques, rights of Parsi women married to a non-Parsi person are some mentioned in the reference order.
- Questions such as the interrelationship between article 25 and 26 with other fundamental rights need consideration of a larger bench.
- Conference of advocates directed to decide upon the issues to deal with, as multiple issues came up in the same causelist.
- All such questions need to be answered before the review petition can be heard. Next hearing after three weeks.
Order Passed on 13th January, 2020
Stating at the outset of the hearing the CJI S.A. Bobde said “we’re not hearing the review, we’re only on the reference point”. Pointing out to the order passed by the Supreme Court on 14th November the Bench said that the previous bench said that the 2018 judgment has to defect. The reference is made out of the issues arising in cases of entry of Muslim women in Mosques, rights of Parsi women married to a non-Parsi person, etc. the bench stated that all these mentioned in the reference was not mentioned on separate causelists, so all these will come under one causelist.
Henceforth, the bench came to the conclusion that the judgment that will be passed by this Hon’ble bench will not only be significant to the Sabarimala issue, but to all the other issues. The hearing will assume significance to all the discriminatory practices against women across religions. The Court also stated that several aspects of the earlier judgment needs consideration of a larger bench such as the interrelationship between article 25 and 26 with other fundamental rights.
The Nine Judge bench directed the four Senior Councils to convene a meeting to decide upon the issues, and also to decide who will deal with which issue. The Court also directed the Secretary General of the Supreme Court to be present in the meeting for coronation. The Court is of the opinion that before the review petition could be heard all these questions need to be answered. The conference of advocated will take place on 17th January and the next hearing will take place after three weeks.
Edited by J. Madonna Jephi
Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje
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2. Financial Express, Sabarimala Temple Case Hearing Live: Supreme Court suggests meeting between opposing sides, next hearing after three weeks, https://www.financialexpress.com/india-news/sabarimala-case-hearing-live-updates-supreme-court-sabarimala-ayappa-temple-verdict/1820992/ (Last visited 15th January, 2020 at 12:53 PM)
3. NDTV, On Sabarimala, Top Court Asks Four Lawyers To Review Issues In 3 Weeks, https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/sabarimala-supreme-court-to-hear-case-after-3-weeks-asks-lawyers-to-review-issues-2163236 (Last visited 15th January, 2020 at 12:53 PM)