New Delhi: On Friday, 25th of November, 2022, the Supreme Court sent a notice to the Centre and the Attorney General of India. It was in response to the pleas to recognize same-sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act of 1954.
To hear the appeals on this matter, a bench presided over by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Hima Kohli has consented. The Supreme Court will hear all of the petitions that are pending throughout all of the High Courts, including Kerala.
All this happened after Supriyo Chakraborty and Abhay Danghad, a couple from Hyderabad, submitted a petition to the Supreme Court asking for the Special Marriage Act’s formal recognition of their same-sex union. They also want the Supreme Court to release the proper instructions to the relevant authorities so that they may legally wed.
After this, the Supreme Court scheduled the case for a hearing in 4 weeks and sent individual notices to the Government and the Attorney General of India.
The lack of a legal framework allowing members of the LGBTQ+ community to marry anyone of their preference was brought up in the petition. In their plea, the pair demanded protection for LGBTQ+ people’s fundamental right to marry anyone they want. They further claimed that this right should be protected from the disapproval of societal and political majorities.
Parth Phiroze Mehrotra and Uday Raj Anand have filed the second PIL. They have been together for the past 17 years. They assert that they are now parenting 2 kids together. But, because they cannot formally wed, neither of the petitioners can have a legal parent-child connection with either of their children.
They argue that although Section 4 of the Special Marriage Act allows any two people to conduct a marriage ceremony, the accompanying restrictions in sub-Section (c) limit its applicability to just males and females.
They, therefore, in their pleas to recognize same-sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act, ask that any gender- or sexuality-based limitations be removed from the law to make it gender-neutral.
The matter is a “sequel” to the Navtej Singh Johar and the Puttaswamy verdicts, according to senior attorney Mukul Rohatgi who is representing the petitioners. He stated that it’s a matter of someone’s life, health, and succession, and the attorneys are just discussing the Special Marriage Act.
You should know that there are 9 cases for pleas to recognize same-sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act and other acts are pending before the Delhi and Kerala High Courts.
While representing the petitioners before the Kerala High Court, senior attorney Neeraj Kishan Kaul informed the panel of the Centre’s declaration that it was moving to transfer all of the cases to the Supreme Court.
He claimed that the matter doesn’t just affect same-sex marriage. It rather has an impact on fundamental rights like gratuities, adoption, same-sex surrogacy, and the establishment of joint accounts as well.
It was after having a close look at all this that the Supreme court decided to pay attention to pleas to recognize same-sex marriage under the Special Marriage Act.