SC to decide if it can refer question of law to larger bench in review jurisdiction

The question on referring to a larger bench for review jurisdiction arose during the hearing in the Sabarimala case

supreme court, collegium, permanent judges, Madras High Court, CJI, S A Bobde, N V Ramana, R F Nariman
The Supreme Court collegium was headed by Chief Justice of India S A Bobde. Photo: PTI

A nine-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court on Thursday (February 6) began deliberations on the legal issue of whether the top court can refer questions of law to a larger bench while exercising its review jurisdiction.

This question arose during the hearing in the Sabarimala case which relates to religious discrimination against women at religious places.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde is hearing the issues relating to discriminations against women at various places of worship including the Sabarimala temple.

The other members of the bench are Justices R Banumathi, Ashok Bhushan, L Nageswara Rao, MM Shantanagoudar, SA Nazeer, R Subhash Reddy, BR Gavai and Surya Kant.

Many senior lawyers including Fali S Nariman, Kapil Sibal, Shyam Divan, Rajeev Dhavan and Rakesh Dwivedi argued on February 3 that while exercising review jurisdiction, the Supreme Court does not have the power to refer a question of law to a larger bench.

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