THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The SC verdict on Ayodhya has initiated a discussion on another front in Kerala. Could the Ayodhya verdict be a pointer to the keenly-watched Sabarimala review petition scheduled before the Supreme Court next week?
A couple of significant observations by the apex court has given rise to speculations that it may have an impact on the Sabarimala review coming up next week.
Watch: Ayodhya Verdict: Key highlights of the landmark judgement
The chief justice has pointed out that Ram Janmabhoomi is not a ‘legal personality’, but the deity is a jurisdictional person. The apex court had also pointed out that the court must accept faith and belief of worshippers.
The Sabarimala issue is centred around the belief that women of menstruating age should not enter Lord Ayyappa’s temple. The celibate nature of the hill shrine’s presiding deity, Lord Ayyappa, has been pointed out as the reason why women of all ages should not be allowed in the temple.
The Ayodhya verdict will definitely have a bearing on the Sabarimala review too, said legal expert Advocate Govind Bharathan.
“The two significant observations - that belief is important and that of the jurisdictional person - will be applicable in the case of Sabarimala also. Hence, I feel that this verdict could reflect in the Sabarimala review also,” he said.
Senior BJP leader Kummanam Rajasekharan said observations by the apex court will have a bearing on the Sabarimala review too.
“The belief has been taken as the fundamental basis of this verdict. Similarly, the ‘jurisdictional personality’ of the Lord has been accepted. It’s the same in Sabarimala too.
“The government was of the view that there was no need to consider faith. The government said gender equality should be of importance. However, today’s verdict makes it clear that freedom to worship is part of faith, and has got constitutional validity. Hence, we believe this verdict will have a bearing on the Sabarimala review,” said Kummanam.
With Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi retiring on November 17, the verdict on the Sabarimala review petition will be delivered next week.