Tuesday, November 28, 2023

‘Hope judgement is in our favour’: Kolkata Gay Couple Ahead of Same-Sex Marriage Verdict

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Anticipating the forthcoming judgment by the Supreme Court concerning marriage equality rights for the LGBTQIA+ community, Abhishek Ray and Chaitanya Sharma, a Kolkata-based gay couple, ardently expressed their hopes for a favorable verdict that would grant legal recognition to their union.

Reflecting the sentiments of many in their community, Ray shared his aspirations, stating, “I hope that this verdict is passed in our favor. Once the law is passed people will be able to share about this easily without any hesitation.” Speaking to media, Sharma emphasized the significance of the decision, underscoring, “We are very hopeful. Socially we are married, but now we want to get legally married. I think the judgment will be in our favor. We are fighting for a positive change.”

Speaking further, Sharma stressed the broader implications of the Same-Sex marriage verdict, emphasizing, “This is not just about the Marriage Act, it is about the basic fundamental rights. I think some things need to be done legally, then society will also accept it. I think once it will be made legal then people will come out and share about this and will not hesitate.”

Offering a legal perspective, advocate Karuna Nundy, in a conversation with ANI, asserted, “I see queer persons, lesbian, gay, transgender people, intersex people, asexual people, as citizens of this country, as human beings on this planet. We all come with certain rights. Tomorrow we shall see whether the court recognizes the right to marry, the right to choose the person that we love or not.” Emphasizing the enduring struggle, she added, “Let us see what happens. We have worked very hard. The struggle has been there for a long time. And regardless of what happens tomorrow, the struggle will continue. But we shall hope for the best.”

With the Supreme Court poised to deliver its decision, a five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, along with Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, S Ravindra Bhat, Hima Kohli, and PS Narasimha, has been meticulously examining a multitude of petitions related to marriage equality rights for the LGBTQIA+ community. Notably, the court has been deliberating the issue within the framework of the Special Marriage Act, refraining from intervening in personal laws.

Among the petitioners, senior advocates Mukul Rohatgi and Saurabh Kirpal have staunchly advocated for the recognition of the fundamental rights of LGBTQ+ individuals to marry without facing discrimination or societal censure.

However, the Central government has taken a different stance, urging that the matter should be debated and decided in Parliament rather than in the judiciary. In the same vein, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) underscored the importance of the welfare of children within the context of the debate.

In contrast, certain states, including Assam, Andhra Pradesh, and Rajasthan, have stood in opposition to the legal recognition of same-sex marriages, potentially shaping the larger discourse around this critical issue.

Also Read: “Congress Actively Strives to Improve Lives of Underprivileged, BJP Merely Pays Lip Service,” Emphasizes Mallikarjun Kharge in Baran
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