Supreme Court
Kerala

Sabarimala: SC declines urgent hearing on Kerala govt’s plea

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday declined urgent hearing on a plea of Kerala government seeking the transfer to the apex court of the petitions pending in the High Court related to Sabarimala.

Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi observed that the matter should come in the normal course, not on an urgent basis.

The Kerala Government has specified 23 petitions which are pending consideration of the High Court. The petitions were filed in the backdrop of security measures adopted by the government like deployment of police and declaration of prohibitory orders under section 11 CrPC. The petitions in High Court challenged the police arrangements and prohibitory order as invasion on right to worship. Also, there are petitions alleging excessive interference by the state government in temple administration.

Last week, the High Court lifted restrictions imposed by Police in Sabarimala. The HC also appointed a three member panel comprising two retired High Court judges and police officials in the rank of DGP and gave them power to oversee the situation. The state Government has also approached the Supreme Court against the directions issued by the High Court saying it is contrary to the spirit of Constitution Bench decision of the Supreme Court delivered on September 28.

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