SC notice on recognition of same-sex marriage under Hindu, Foreign Marriage Acts

The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notice on in a petition filed by a same-sex couple seeking legal recognition of their marriage in India.

A bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud issued notice on the plea.

The plea, filed through advocate Nupur Kumar, said: “The present Petition has been filed praying that this court may be pleased to issue a declaration to the effect that the persons belonging to the LGBTQIA+ community have the same right to marriage as their heterosexual counterparts and a denial therefore is violative of the rights guaranteed under Articles 14, 19, and 21 of Part III of the Constitution of India, and upheld in various judgements of the Supreme Court including Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of Indiaa..and NALSA v. Union of India.”

The petitioners in this case, an Indian national and a US citizen, got married and registered their marriage in the US in 2014 and now seek to register their marriage under the Foreign Marriage Act, 1969.

Senior advocate Anand Grover, representing the petitioners, requested for live streaming of the matter, saying there are many people who are interested in the matter. The top court said it will consider it when the matter is listed for hearing.

The plea sought a direction that the petitioners, like any person belonging to the LGBTQI communities, have a right to marry each other, that is a person of their choice, of the same sex, irrespective of one’s religion, gender, sexual orientation or any other protected under Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution and further have a right to register their marriage under Section 5 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, and under Section 17 of the Foreign Marriages Act, 1969 if they have lawfully married in a foreign jurisdiction at least one person is an Indian citizen for like any other heterosexual couple as also register their marriage.

On November 25, the Supreme Court issued notice to the Centre and the Attorney General on two petitions filed by gay couples seeking recognition of same sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act.

Senior advocate Neeraj Kishan Kaul, appearing for lead petitioners Supriyo Chakraborty and Abhay Dang, submitted before a bench headed by Chief Justice Chandrachud that this is a plea for same sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act.

The bench, also comprising Justice Hima Kohli, said the high court is already hearing the matter. The counsel submitted that Centre had informed the Kerala High Court that a transfer plea would be moved before the apex court.

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