Review petition filed in SC against Sabarimala verdict

Chennai: A review petition has been filed in the Supreme Court against its verdict allowing women of all ages to worship at Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple.

The Desiya Ayyappa Bhakthargal Seva Sangam filed the petition today against the recent judgement of the Supreme Court that said it was the constitutional right of every girl / woman to worship at Sabarimala.

The plea, filed by Shylaja Vijayan, president of the National Ayyappa Devotees Association, said the 28 September judgement which had allowed entry of women of all ages in the hill-top shrine is “absolutely untenable and irrational, if not perverse”.

A five-judge constitution bench, headed by then Chief Justice Dipak Misra, had in its 4:1 verdict, said banning the entry of women into the shrine is gender discrimination and that the practice violates rights of Hindu women.

Representatives of Kerala Lord Ayyappa temple’s chief priests on Sunday refused to participate in talks to be held by the Kerala government today regarding the Supreme Court verdict on Sabarimala.

“Let us hear the final decision of the State government with regard to the filing of a review petition against the apex court’s verdict,” said Sabarimala priest Kantararu Mohanaru. “Once that is known, then we will decide on what needs to be done. To deploy female police personnel in the temple premises is a violation of the temple practices.”

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan proposed to hold talks with representatives of the priest and the erstwhile Pandalam royal family amid mounting protests by devotees against the Supreme Court order allowing women to enter the temple.

Hundreds of devotees, mostly women, took part in marches in Kottayam and Malappuram districts on Saturday against the Left Democratic Front-led government’s decision to implement the verdict without going for a review petition.

NT Bureau