Hinduism does not discriminate between male and female devotees, the Supreme Court said on Wednesday, reported NDTV. “A Hindu is a Hindu,” the court observed, while hearing a plea on the ban on women entering Kerala’s famous Sabarimala temple. Reacting to the court's observation, Bhumata Brigade member and activist Trupti Desai said, "We welcome the verdict, we will definitely go there after the final verdict." The court will hear the case next on April 18.

The apex court said the temple's ban on women cannot be put down to the Hindu religion, but was something that the temple management had developed as a custom. The court reiterated its earlier observation that a woman cannot be denied entry into a temple on the basis of traditions that are against the Constitution.

On April 11, the apex court had pulled up temple authorities regarding the rampant gender discrimination at Sabarimala, saying that such restrictions infringe on one’s constitutional rights. "What is the basis on which women have been denied entry into temples. Anyone can worship god, he is omnipresent," the court had said, adding that such rules were unacceptable.

Only females over the age of 50 and under the age of 10 are allowed inside the temple. The rule is aimed at keeping menstruating women away from the premises. In 2015, the head of the temple's board had said that women can enter the temple only after a body scanner is created to determine their purity.