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People For Dharma @People4Dharma
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#Sabarimalahearing 1. Mr. R.P.Gupta, counsel for Indian Young Lawyers Association (the Petitioner), has resumed arguments. He again walked through the Order dated October 13,2017 wherein reference was made to the Constitution Bench
2. Mr. R.P.Gupta reiterates his position that #Sabarimala Temple has Buddhist origins. The Bench questions the relevance and authencity of the submissions in this regard.
3. Mr. R.P.Gupta is walking the Court through the Provisions of the Travancore Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act to make the case that the #Sabarimala Temple is part of State under the Constitution
4. Mr. R.P.Gupta is dilating on the requirements of "religious denomination" under Article 26 and their rights under the said Article #Sabarimala
5. Mr. R.P. Gupta contends that the oath of celibacy which is observed for 41 days by devotees visiting #Sabarimala is not an essential aspect of the tradition of the Temple.
6. Mr. R.P. Gupta contends that since the #Sabarimala Temple falls under the Travancore Devaswom Board, which also administers other Temples, the #Sabarimala Temple cannot claim to be of a separate religious denomination.
7. State funding of the #Sabarimala Temple makes it part of the State and therefore there can't be any discrimination based on gender, submits Mr. R.P.Gupta.
8. Mr. R.P.Gupta submits that the bar on entry of women into the #Sabarimala Temple was originally based on the difficulties faced by women in visiting the Temple, which is no more the case.
9. Mr R.P.Gupta submits that while women are allowed into the Chengannur Temple at the base of #Sabarimala mountain near the Pampa River, they are not allowed into the #Sabarimala Temple.
10. Mr R.P.Gupta submits that the Shirur Mutt decision protects only the essential aspect of a faith. #Sabarimala
11. Mr R.P.Gupta submits religious practices which are based on superstition do not enjoy protection under Article 26. #sabarimala
12. Practices which are not essential part of the faith and which are against constitutional morality cannot be protected under the garb of Article 26, submits Mr. R.P.Gupta. #Sabarimala
13. Mr. R.P. Gupta is now dealing with the judgement of the Supreme Court in Venkataramana Devaru v State of Mysuru which deals with the interplay between Articles 25 & 26. #Sabarimala
14. Mr. R.P.Gupta is drawing the attention of the administration of the #Sabarimala Temple under the Travancore Devaswom Board and the legislation which governs it.
15. Hearing to continue post lunch
16. Mr. R.P.Gupta has concluded his submissions. Ms. Indira Jaising has commenced submissions in support of the Petitioner's position. #Sabarimala
17. Ms. Jaising submits that all Temple Entry legislations have been enacted pursuant to Article 17, which applies to institutions of religious denominations as well. #Sabarimala
18. Ms. Jaising is now reading out Section 3 of Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship (authorisation of Entry) Rules, 1965 #Sabarimala
19. Ms. Jaising submits that what is good law for Harijans under Article 17 is good for women. #Sabarimala
20. Ms. Jaising submits that bar in #Sabarimala on entry of women between the ages of 10 & 50 is based on discrimination attributable to the process of menstruation
21. Ms. Jaising is appearing for an intervenor supporting the position of the Petitioner. #Sabarimala
22. Justice Chandrachud points out that the history of Article 17 shows that it was never meant to address women-orinted issues or discrimination. Instead Mr. Chandrachud draws attention to Article 25(2)(b). #Sabarimala
23. Ms. Jaising submits that untouchability applies to all forms of social boycott regardless of its basis. #Sabarimala
24. Justice Chandrachud is now referring to the definition of place under Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship (authorisation of Entry) Rules, 1965 #Sabarimala
25. Justice Chandrachud is examining whether the Rules are contrary to the provisions of the Act and the Constitution. #Sabarimala
26. Justice Nariman weighs in to point out that rights under Article 26 are subservient to Article 25(2)(b) as held by the Supreme Court in Venkataramana Devaru judgment.
27. Ms. Jaising draws attention to the preamble of the Constitution to refer to the right of worship to make the point that it is the right of every individual regardless of gender. #Sabarimala
28. Ms. Jaising submits that whether or not the #Sabarimala Temple enjoys denominational rights under Article 26 is irrelevant to the issue at hand in view of Article 25(2)(b).
29. Ms. Jaising has concluded her submissions. The Amicus Curiae, Mr. Raju Ramachandran, has now commenced his submissions. #Sabarimala
30. Mr. Ramachandran submits that the Kerala High Court has not given a finding in its judgement that the #Sabarimala Temple enjoys the status of a religious denomination under Article 26
31. Mr. Ramachandran submits that Article 25(2)(b) controls both Articles 25(1) and 26. He relies on the judgement in Venkataramana Devaru to support this position.
32. Mr. Ramachandran submits that Section 3 of Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship Act is a mirror image of Articles 25 & 26. #Sabarimala
33. Mr. Ramachandran submits that Section 4 of the Kerala Hindu Places of Public Worship Act itself renders the impugned notification of Rules ultra vires the Act #Sabarimala
34. Justices Chandrachud and Nariman question the nexus between age of the women and menstruation. #Sabarimala
35. Hearing done for today. Will continue tomorrow #Sabarimala
36. The Counsel for the State Government of Kerala, Mr. Joydeep Gupta, informed the Court during the hearing that the State Govt has gone back to its 2015 position - it supports entry of women of all ages into the #Sabarimala Temple.
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