Thiruvananthapuram: Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala on Tuesday said that the approach of the government on the issue of the entry of women devotees into the Sabrimala Ayyappa Temple would be in favour of the temple’s customs.
“Women are not barred from entering the temple. But there is an age-limit. The functioning of the temple is according to the customs and tradition,” Chennithala told reporters here when asked about the Supreme Court observation that no temple can bar the entry of women devotees -- except on the basis of religion.
Reacting to the SC poser, Minister for Devaswom V S Sivakumar said that the government’s approach on the matter would not harm the belief of the devotees. He said an affidavit would be filed in the court after examining the aspects of the court rule.
The Supreme Court had on Monday ruled that no temple can bar the entry of women devotees -- except on the basis of religion.
Judges Dipak Misra, Pinaki Chandra Ghose and N.V. Ramana said this while hearing a petition by the Indian Young Lawyers Association challenging the Sabrimala Ayyappa Temple's custom of prohibiting the entry of women between the age of 10 and 50 years.
The court observed that a "temple can't prohibit entry except on the basis of religion. Unless you have a constitutional right, you can't prohibit the entry".
The next hearing has been scheduled for February 8.