The apex court also directed Kerala police to ensure round-the-clock security to two women -- Kanakadurga and Bindu -- who had entered the temple first on January 2
The Kerala government on January 18 informed the Supreme Court that a total of 51 women under the age of 50 had entered Sabarimala temple in Kerala since the apex court's verdict allowing women of all ages to entry.
The top court also directed Kerala Police to ensure round-the-clock security to two women -- Kanakadurga and Bindu -- who had entered the temple first on January 2, despite protests right-wing Hindu groups.
A bench of Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi and Justices LN Rao and SK Kaul was hearing a plea by the two women.
The plea sought directions to all authorities to allow women of all age groups to enter the temple without any hindrance and to ensure security and safe passage, including police security to women wishing to enter the temple in future.
On September 28 last year, a five-judge Constitution bench, headed by then Chief Justice Dipak Misra, in a 4:1 verdict paved the way for entry of women of all ages into the Sabarimala temple, saying the ban amounted to gender discrimination.
Kanakadurga and Bindu had stepped into the hallowed precincts on January 2 guarded by police three months after the apex court's historic judgment lifting the ban on entry of girls and women between 10 and 50 years of age into the shrine of Lord Ayyappa, its "eternally celibate" deity.
The top court has said it may not start hearing pleas seeking a review of the Sabarimala verdict from January 22 as one of the judges was on medical leave.
Earlier, the apex court decided to hear in open court the review petitions against the verdict. Besides Justice Indu Malhotra and the CJI, justices RF Nariman, AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud are part of the five-judge constitution bench.
Justice Malhotra had delivered the dissenting judgment in the case.(With inputs from PTI)