In Court, Govt Opposes Legalising Same-Sex Marriage, Says ‘Our Culture and Law Do Not Recognise It’

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The Govt of India today opposed a petition seeking recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act 1955, telling the Delhi High Court that “Our culture and law don’t recognize the concept of same-sex marriages”.

A PIL had been filed in the Delhi High Court last week and the court was hearing it today. The Govt of India was represented by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who argued that as per law, marriage is only between a man and a woman. Mr. Mehta also said that in the Navtej Johar case, the Supreme Court “had merely decriminalised homosexuality, nothing more and less”. He also said that in order to recognise same-sex marriages, several statutory provisions of the law will have to be modified, and the court cannot do it.

However, the court asked the SG and the government to be more open minded and that “changes were happening across the world” and pointed out that at this stage, the Court was looking at maintainability of the PIL.

The court then asked the petitioners to first try and register such a marriage, and bring to them any aggrieved person who had been denied marriage. The case has been adjourned to October.

Sukhdeep Singh