Apex court throws out plea to allow women to enter mosques for prayers

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The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a plea by the State president of the Kerala unit of the Akhil Bharatha Hindu Mahasabha to allow Muslim women to enter mosques for offering prayers and to shed the “purdah” system.

A Bench led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi refused to entertain the plea by Swamy Dethathreya Sai Swaroop Nath, who had challenged the Kerala High Court’s dismissal of his petition.

“Let a Muslim woman challenge it,” Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi observed orally.

The petitioner said he “looks upon Muslim women as none other than his sisters”. “The segregation and discrimination shown against Muslim women by not allowing them to enter and pray in masjids in the main prayer hall along with their male counterparts is against Articles 21 and 14 of the Constitution,” the petition said.

Any strict adherence to the preachings and teachings of past centuries was “equivalent to the strict adherence to the size and type of clothes worn during childhood even during adulthood. This amounts to obstinacy,” it said.

On “purdah”, it said the “culture and concept of looking at a woman as a personal belonging has led to the purdah system”.

“In a hot country like ours, it is a cause of discomfort… Moreover, it gives anti-social elements a chance to misuse the apparel to conceal oneself and do anti-social acts,” it argued.

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Printable version | Oct 16, 2021 1:03:14 AM |

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