New Delhi, Sept 28 (IENews) India’s Supreme Court held that the Constitutional right to pray of a woman is equal to that of a man.
Hearing petitions challenging the ban on entry of women in Kerala’s Sabrimala temple, the five-judge Constitution Bench – headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, opined, “On what basis do you (referring to the temple authorities) deny the entry. It is against the Constitutional mandate. Once you open it for public, anybody can go.”
Chief Justice Dipak Misra expressed that if the temple allows men to enter, then it must allow women to enter too. “There is no concept of a private temple. If there is a temple, then it is a public place and everyone is allowed to go there.”
The Kerala government’s assertion that ceremonial rules pertaining to temples and method of worship are set by the temple and are protected under the right to worship was opposed by the CJI stating that ‘a temple cannot claim denominational rights’.
“Your right to worship as a woman at par with a man is not dependent on a legislation. It’s there in the Constitution. It’s there in article 25(1). This law facilitates equal right of worship by everyone,” CJI said.
Justice DY Chandrachud, who was part of the five-judge constitutional bench that was hearing the case, elucidated, “Every woman is also the creation of God and why should there be discrimination against them in employment or worship.”
The Constitution Bench also includes Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, AM Khanwilkar and Indu Malhotra.