Don't leave same-sex marriage up to the Parliament, petitioners tell SC

Don't leave same-sex marriage up to the Parliament, petitioners tell SC

The SC bench was hearing for the fourth day the pleas for legalising same-sex marriages in India on Tuesday.

FPJ BureauUpdated: Tuesday, April 25, 2023, 08:36 PM IST
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New Delhi: The petitioners rejected the Centre's plea to leave the issue of the same-sex marriage up to Parliament, pointing out that Parliament is bound by the Constitution as the courts interpret.

Arguing for the petitioners, Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra said, “Virtually every democratic, progressive country of the world has recognised same sex marriages. We cannot be behind."

Senior advocate Maneka Guruswamy countered the Centre's assertion, pointing out that they are relying on the British form of parliament, whereas ours is a Parliament constrained by the Constitution, and the Constitution is interpreted by the court.

Day 4 of hybrid hearing

The 5-judge Constitution Bench, headed by Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud, was hearing for the fourth day the pleas for legalising same-sex marriages in India on Tuesday. The hearing remained inconclusive. It was a hybrid hearing as the CJI and Justices Hima Kohli and P S Narasimha were in the court while Justices S K Kaul and S R Bhat heard through the online medium. Justice Bhat was found infected with virus last Friday while Justice Kaul has just recovered.

Arguing for a same-sex couple married in the US, in which one person was born in India, Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra brought up the Foreign Marriages Act of 1969.

She said, “Virtually every democratic, progressive country of the world has recognised same sex marriages. We cannot be behind. Even if it’s one person or one minority. We cannot deny them rights. This includes their rights of visa, inheritance, adoption, right to have children, insurance.”

The petitioners also previously argued that if the right to marry a person of choice is guaranteed under Article 21 (Protection of Life and Personal Liberty) and that marriage offers a measure of societal protection.

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