More than a decade after the Indian Young Lawyer’s Association filed a petition seeking lifting of ban on women’s entry in Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple, a three-member bench of Supreme Court (SC) headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, referred the case to a Constitution Bench on Friday. The petition assailing the Rule 3 (b) of Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship (Authorisation of Entry) Rules, 1965, was filed in the year 2006 and the rule has been flayed on the grounds of violation of right to equality and discrimination on the basis of gender.
On March 7, 2008, the Court referred the case to a three-member bench. A hearing in the case was held only on January 11, 2016. In February 2017, the Court said it might refer the case to a Constitution Bench. Following it, the three-member bench including CJI Dipak Misra, Justice R. Bhanumathi and Justice Ashok Bhushan referred the case to a Constitution Bench on October 13, 2017.