The Supreme Court is hearing petitions seeking sanction to same sex marriages
The notion of heterosexuality must be deconstructed, the Supreme Court was told today during a hearing on petitions seeking legal sanction to same sex marriages.
Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the petitioners, said that the fundamental rights guaranteed in Constitution were for all individuals, heterosexual or queer. So, there was no reason why they should be denied the right to marriage, he said.
"We will not be treated as lesser mortals and there will be full enjoyment of right to life," Mr Rohatgi argued, adding, "We must deconstruct the notion of heterosexuality."
"We want a declaration that we have a right to marry, that right will be recognised by the State and will be registered under Special Marriage Act. Once that happens, the society will accept us. The stigma will only go once the state recognises it. That will be full and final assimilation," he said.
Arguing on the matter yesterday, the petitioners said the Special Marriage Act should mention 'spouse' instead of man and woman.
The centre has said that those part of the proceedings don't represent the views of the nation and that these petitions reflect "urban elitist views". It has said that only the legislature can decide on the creation of a new social relationship and that the court must examine if it can hear this matter.
"In the question of personal laws, the Legislature is duty bound to act in accordance with the popular will. Where the social consensus favours a particular definition of Marriage, the Legislature in giving sanction to that form is only discharging its duty of adhering to the will of the people. This unequivocal democratic will should not be negated by a judicial order," it has said.
Responding to this, Mr Rohatgi said, "Society accepts what the Law is... sometimes law takes the lead. Push the society to acknowledge us as equals as the Constitution says so."
On the question of 'popular will', he said, "Majority is not the basis. It's my right. We are equal human begins entitled to rights guaranteed under Constitution." Nobody can deny a full and equal citizenship, he said.