Express news service
NEW DELHI: Same-sex marriages are neither part of Indian culture nor of the law, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the Delhi High Court on Monday while opposing a public interest dispute (PIL) demanding marriage rights for the gay community under the Hindu Marriage Act.
The court heard a DIP filed by four members of the LGBTQ community – Abhijit Iyer Mitra, Gopi Shankar M, Giti Thadani and G Oorvasi – claiming that even after the Supreme Court decriminalized consensual homosexual acts, marriage between couples alike sex is still not possible.
Mehta’s submission was made during a hearing before a tribunal consisting of Delhi High Court Chief Justice DN Patel and Judge Prateek Jalan.
Mehta challenged the petitioners’ claim that the Hindu marriage law does not distinguish between heterosexual and same-sex marriage since it does not describe marriage as a union between a man and a woman, but only between two Hindus. .
He said the relief requested by the petitioners cannot be granted unless several laws across the land are changed.
Judge Jalan said changes have taken place across the world and when two men marry in a foreign country, neither is considered a bride.
The court asked the petitioners to file affidavits from members of the community who are aggrieved by the authorities’ refusal to register same-sex marriages and set the hearing for October 21.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta clarified in his brief that he had not received any instructions, but was simply indicating legal provisions to show that the law does not allow same-sex marriages. He said he will file a detailed note on the same