In January 2016, the Supreme Court had questioned the ban and said that this can not be done under the Constitution, following which, in February, the top court reserved an order on referring the case to a constitution bench.
Confining the questions for reference to the Constitution Bench, a Bench of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, Justices R. Banumathi and Ashok Bhushan stated, basically, the Constitution Bench will choose whether the act of restriction on ladies is sexual orientation biased, violates their right to equality, and religious freedom.
The temple, situated in the Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, restricts women aged between 10 and 50 from visiting the premises. The court had said that "gender discrimination in such a matter is unacceptable".
The apex court also framed a question whether restricting the entry of women at the temple was violative of their rights under the Constitution.
The Supreme Court on Friday referred the pleas on allowing women - aged between 10 to 50 years -to enter into Kerala's Sabarimala temple to a constitutional bench.
With this verdict by Supreme Court, the long sustaining protest against the entry of women tends to put an end to the practice. By extension, women who have crossed menopause are allowed into the temple.
The Constiution Bench will answer the question whether a 1991 judgment of the Kerala High Court upholding the ban would amount to res judicata.
The Supreme Court is hearing a plea challenging the practice of the ban on entry of women by the management of the Sabarimala temple. "Every right needs to be balanced but every balancing has its own limitations", the report further added.
This assumes significance as after coming to power, the CPM-led Left Front government has favoured the entry of women of all ages into Sabarimala temple - a position that is divergent from the one earlier taken by the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) government.
The UDF government had taken a view that it was against the entry of women of the age group of 10-50 years as such a practice was being followed since time immemorial.