Is banning women in the age group 10-50 years from entering temple constitutional?

New Delhi– The Indian Supreme Court on Friday referred to a Constitution Bench the question whether a ban on the entry of women in the age group 10-50 years in Kerala’s Sabarimala temple was discriminatory and violative of the Right to Equality under Article 14.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice R. Banumathi and Justice Ashok Bhushan also framed six questions to be addressed by the Constitution Bench.

The questions include whether the existing practice of exclusion of women between 10-50 years age by the temple was permissible and whether biological factors were ground enough for excluding women from entering the temple.

The Constitution Bench would also examine whether the ban was violative of the Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship Act that authorised entry of all women in the temple.

The temple, built in the 12th century, is located in Pathanamthitta district and is dedicated to Lord Ayappa.

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