Amid the ongoing debate over whether 'same-sex' marriages should be legitimised or not in a multi-cultural country like India, the Madhya Pradesh government has submitted its views before the Centre.
The Union Law Ministry, on April 18, sought response from state governments over the issue, to which BJP-led Madhya Pradesh government has submitted its response. Madhya Pradesh Advocate General Prashant Singh talking to IANS on Friday said, "We have filed our interventions with the Centre."
In it's letter to the states, the Union Law Ministry said: "It may be noted that the subject of marrige pertains to Entry 5 in the concurrent list of the Constitution of India. Moreover, any decision on this matter requires an assessment of the ramifications on existing social customs, practices, values, norms, mores, State Rules and such like that may be prevalent in different sections of the society. It is important that a composit and cohesive view is presented before the Court incorporating the views of all state governments for effective adjudication."
The Advocate General, however, did not say much about state's views on this heated subject maintaing the secrecy, but it is most likely that the Madhya Pradesh government led by the BJP will stand with its central leadership, which is vehemently against the idea of same-sex marriage.
"There is no question about going against the Centre's decision. Madhya Pradesh would maintain what the Centre has already submitted before the Supreme Court," said Rajneesh Agrawal, a senior functionary in the state BJP unit.
Meanwhile, as the Supreme Court hearing a series of petitions in the land mark case filed by 18 LGBTQ+ couples including three who are raising children together, seeking marriage equality in the country and even refused to accept Centre's appeal on some ground, a perception is taking shape within the state BJP unit that Chief Justice (CJI) D.Y. Chandrachud has been "deliberately interfering in legislative jurisdiction".
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Around half a dozen of leaders in Madhya Pradesh BJP shared their views with IANS; they all believe that the CJI has "widely differing views" with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
"He (CJI) is trying to change the law of nature about male and female," a senior BJP leader said on condition of anonymity.
Senior advocate and Rajya Sabha MP Vivek Tankha said that conceptually it won't be easy to accept it as different people have their different opinion on this subject, but, "I would be happy if it (same-sex marriage) would be legitimised... As a human being we can't object it. Because it's thier life."
The Supreme Court on Thursday said it could follow the example of a landmark verdict of the UK top court and constructively interpret the Special Marriage Act to give same-sex couples the rights enjoyed by heterosexual couples as members of the LGBTQIA+ community were already living in stable, marriage-like relationships since 2018 after the decriminalisation of homosexuality.
If the Supreme Court rules in favour of same-sex marriage, this could be the first significant step towards the protection of LGBTQ+ rights since the court's landmark decision in 2018 to read down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code.
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