Big news coming in. The Supreme Court of India has given its verdict on same-sex marriage in India. The Honorable Court has ruled against same-sex marriage. The court was of view that the legislature must decide on bringing in same-sex marriage. The top court has refused to give marriage equality rights to LGBTQIA+ community in India. A five-judge bench of the Supreme Court that was headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, ruled in a 3:2 verdict against legalising same-sex marriage. The bench also comprised Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Ravindra Bhat, Hima Kohli and PS Narasimha. The Chief Justice said that the Court cannot make law but only interpret it. The CJI was of the opinion that Parliament should decide on the issue. Furthermore, Chief Justice has directed the states to: 1. Ensure the queer community is not discriminated against. 2. Ensure that there is no discrimination in access to goods and services. 3. Sensitise the public about queer rights. 4. Create a hotline for the queer community. 5. Create safe houses or Garima grih for queer couples. 6. Ensure inter-sex children are not forced to undergo operations. 7. No person shall be forced to undergo any hormonal therapy. Chief Justice DY Chandrachud also issues guidelines to police to not harass the queer people or force them to return to their natal families. There were 21 pleas seeking legal validation for same-sex marriages. During this whole course of hearings, the petitioners said that “India is a marriage-based culture”” and that LGBT couples should be granted the same rights as any heterosexual couples have, like the status of “spouse”” in finance and insurance issues; medical, inheritance, and succession decisions, and even in adoption and surrogacy matters. The Chief Justice has directed the Union government to constitute a committee headed by the Cabinet Secretary to decide the rights and entitlements of persons in queer unions. CJI also said that the State, Union and UTs shall not bar queer people from getting into union to avail benefits of the state.
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