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"Will File The Reply Today": Centre Tells Delhi High Court On Pleas Seeking Recognition For Same Sex Marriages Under Various Marriage Laws

Shreya Agarwal
25 Feb 2021 6:42 AM GMT
Will File The Reply Today: Centre Tells Delhi High Court On Pleas Seeking Recognition For Same Sex Marriages Under Various Marriage Laws
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Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on Thursday informed that the Centre would be filing their reply affidavit today of petitions seeking recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act, Special Marriage Act and the Foreign Marriage Act.A division bench of Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Justice Amit Bansal was hearing the petitions. In a previous hearing, the centre had sought...

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Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on Thursday informed that the Centre would be filing their reply affidavit today of petitions seeking recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act, Special Marriage Act and the Foreign Marriage Act.

A division bench of Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Justice Amit Bansal was hearing the petitions.
In a previous hearing, the centre had sought for time to file its reply, after which the matter was posted for today.

The court directed the petitioners to file their replies to the affidavit within two weeks of the Centre's affidavit.

Upon the court's query whether hearing the matter next in April was convenient for all parties, and whether there was any urgency, counsel for the petitioner, Menaka Guruswamy informed the court that there was an urgency, to which SG Mehta replied saying that there were more urgent and genuine issues, and asked, "Is this genuine?"

He added that, "Urgency is always relative." The court has posted the matter for further hearing on Apr 20.
Earlier, Mehta had opposed the plea submitting that the concept of same-sex marriage is not recognized under Indian culture or under Indian law.
"Our culture and law don't recognize the concept of same-sex marriages", he had said.
"As per law, a marriage is only between a husband and a wife", Mehta had argued in the hearing of the plea for recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act, and urged that the Hindu Marriage Act (the Act) itself did not recognize same-sex marriages.
The SG had submitted that the culture of any country is codified in statutory provisions and unless several statutory provisions are altered, which the court cannot do, the relief as prayed for in the pleas could not be granted.
The SG had then said that the matter did not require the filing of an affidavit as it could be argued on the basis of statutory provisions and that he would come back after getting instructions from the Centre.
He had also maintained that the effect of Supreme Court's 2018 judgment in Navtej Singh Johar's case was only to decriminalize consensual homosexual activities, "nothing more, nothing less".
The bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan had then went on to suggest that the petitioners, who are activists and members of the LGBTQ community, could first try and get their marriage registered and if in case they were denied, they could approach the Court with their grievance.After earlier opposing a plea before the Delhi High Court seeking recognition for the rights of same-sex couples to get married under the various marriage laws of the country, the Solicitor General of India, Tushar Mehta today asked of the petitioners during the hearing whether the issue in the plea was even genuine, after the petitioners sought an earlier date for hearing.
A division bench of Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Justice Amit Bansal was hearing a bunch of petitions seeking recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act, Special Marriage Act and the Foreign Marriage Act. In a previous hearing, the centre had sought for time to file its reply, after which the matter was posted for today.
Mehta informed the court that they would be filing their reply affidavit today, which would be a common reply for all the petitioners.
The court directed the petitioners to file their replies to the affidavit within two weeks of the Centre's affidavit. Upon the court's query whether hearing the matter next in April was convenient for all parties, and whether there was any urgency, counsel for the petitioner, Menaka Guruswamy informed the court that there was an urgency, to which SG Mehta replied saying that there were more urgent and genuine issues, and asked, "Is this genuine?"
He added that, "Urgency is always relative." The court has posted the matter for further hearing on Apr 8.
Earlier, Mehta had opposed the plea submitting that the concept of same-sex marriage is not recognized under Indian culture or under Indian law.
"Our culture and law don't recognize the concept of same-sex marriages", he had said.
"As per law, a marriage is only between a husband and a wife", Mehta had argued in the hearing of the plea for recognition of same-sex marriages under the Hindu Marriage Act, and urged that the Hindu Marriage Act (the Act) itself did not recognize same-sex marriages.
The SG had submitted that the culture of any country is codified in statutory provisions and unless several statutory provisions are altered, which the court cannot do, the relief as prayed for in the pleas could not be granted.
The SG had then said that the matter did not require the filing of an affidavit as it could be argued on the basis of statutory provisions and that he would come back after getting instructions from the Centre.
He had also maintained that the effect of Supreme Court's 2018 judgment in Navtej Singh Johar's case was only to decriminalize consensual homosexual activities, "nothing more, nothing less".
The bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan had then went on to suggest that the petitioners, who are activists and members of the LGBTQ community, could first try and get their marriage registered and if in case they were denied, they could approach the Court with their grievance.


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