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Central Govt. Opposes Live Streaming of Same-Sex Marriage Hearing, Citing Concerns About Inciting Violent Incidents

2 min read

Khushi Bajpai

Published on: 24rd August, 2022 at 20:54 IST

Centre has once again opposed live streaming of proceedings in the case concerning the recognition and registration of same-sex marriages in the country before the Delhi High Court.

The second affidavit was filed by the Ministry of Law and Justice after the high court expressed displeasure at the “objectionable comments” made in its previous affidavit.

The Ministry has argued that in matters like the present one, where “sharp ideological schisms may be present”, a live telecast of the proceedings may not be advisable.

The centre has further said that while every matter that comes before the court is important, live streaming for every case may be neither feasible nor possible.

The reply states that “the petitioners herein are already being represented. Being interested parties, their interests are being safeguard by their council and the said counsel/lawyers are also likely to be transmitting the relevant updates/information regarding the hearings that may be held.

The plea moved by Joydeep Sengupta, an OCI card holder, and his partner Russell Blaine Stephens, prays for a declaration from the court that “a spouse of foreign origin of an Indian citizen or OCI cardholder is entitled to apply for registration as an OCI under the citizenship act regardless of the gender, sex, or sexual orientation of the applicant spouse.”

The plea reasons that since Section 7A(1)(d) of the Citizenship Act, 1955, does not distinguish between heterosexual, same-sex, or queer spouses, a person married to an overseas citizen of India, whose marriage has been registered and subsisting for two years, should be declared eligible to apply as a spouse for an OCI card.

The High Court has also issued notices on two related petitions, one seeking recognition of the marriage of a transgender person and another seeking recognition of the marriage of a lesbian couple.