In 2018, The Supreme Court delivered majority verdict of 4:1 granting permission for all Women and Girls (even those between the age of 10 to 50) to enter the Ayyappa shrine in Sabarimala. Centuries-old Practice of ban on Women in menstrual age from entering the Ayyappa Temple was called illegal and unconstitutional by the Apex Court. Several objections were raised over the historic verdict, especially Ayyappa Devotees and Political Parties voiced their opinion in a negative manner. Until now, Only few Women (2) could enter the Ayyappa Shrine and that too with the support of Cops due to the protests.
Over 60 Review Petitions were filed arguing that Court can't interfere in the internal matters of a religious community. A 5-member Supreme Court Bench-headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi read out a majority verdict (3:2) on Thursday. While CJI Ranjan Gogoi, Justices AM Khanwilkar and Indu Malhotra favoured ban on Women and Girls between the age 10 to 50, Justices RF Nariman and DY Chandrachud stressed the need for all-women entry into Ayyappa Shrine.
Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi maintained, 'If all Women were allowed into Ayyappa Shrine, Then it leads to a larger debate..whether Muslim and Parsi Women be allowed to enter religious practice. What about female genital mutilation in the Dawoodi Bohra Community? Restrictions on Women in religious places wasn't limited to Hindus or Sabarimala, Its prevalent in other religions as well'.
The 5-Judge SC Bench announced that a Seven-Judge Supreme Court bench will now handle the review petitions on Sabarimala Women-entry Issue. For now, All-Women Entry continues in Sabarimala. The 7-Judge Bench is going to take care of the objections raised by various petitioners on the 2018 verdict of Supreme Court.