Published On: Wed, May 3rd, 2023

Centre To SC: Govt to set up committee to explore administrative concerns of same-sex couples

New Delhi: The Centre on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that a committee headed by the cabinet secretary would be constituted to explore administrative steps for addressing some concerns of same-sex couples without going into the issue of legalizing their marriage.

Government is positive about the suggestion for exploring administrative steps in this regard

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, told a five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, which is hearing a batch of pleas seeking legal validation of same-sex marriage, that the government is positive about the suggestion for exploring administrative steps in this regard.

He told the bench, which also comprised justices SK Kaul, SR Bhat, Hima Kohli, and PS Narasimha, that this will need coordination between more than one ministry. On the seventh day of the hearing in the matter, Mehta said the petitioners can give their suggestions on the issue of exploring what administrative steps can be taken in this regard.

While hearing the matter on April 27, the apex court had asked the Centre whether social welfare benefits can be granted to same-sex couples without going into legalizing their marriage.

The court had posed the question after observing that the Centre’s acceptance of the right to the cohabitation of same-sex partners as a fundamental right cast a “corresponding duty” on it to recognize its social consequences.

 

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