In a landmark decision, India’s Supreme Court is poised to unveil its verdict on the nation’s legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

The eagerly awaited announcement, which could have a profound impact on the lives of countless individuals and couples, is set to be announced any time now.

The journey to this pivotal moment began earlier this year in May when the top court reserved judgment on a series of pleas seeking legal validation for same-sex marriage. The bench hearing these pleas included Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices SK Kaul, SR Bhat, Hima Kohli, and PS Narasimha.


During this extensive legal process, 18 same-sex couples bravely filed petitions before the Supreme Court, seeking official recognition of their relationships with the legal and social status of “marriage.” These couples, along with many LGBTQ+ activists and supporters, have been advocating for equal rights and recognition in alignment with India’s diverse and inclusive ethos.

A crucial aspect of the petitioners’ case was the request for a declaration by the Supreme Court that “marriage,” as defined by the Special Marriage Act, should inherently include same-sex couples. This demand reflects the broader movement to ensure that all love and commitment, regardless of gender, are acknowledged and protected under the law.

Throughout the hearings, petitioners argued that “India is a marriage-based culture” and emphasised the need for LGBTQ+ couples to be granted the same rights as any heterosexual couple. These rights encompass various aspects, including the legal status of “spouse” in financial, banking, and insurance matters, medical and end-of-life decisions, inheritance, succession, adoption, and surrogacy.

Furthermore, petitioners insisted on recognition under the Special Marriage Act and the registration of “marriage” under the SMA and the Foreigners Marriage Act in cases involving one partner being a foreign national. Their arguments were grounded in the principles of the Indian Constitution, the UN Human Rights Declaration, and the right to freedom from discrimination. They also drew upon various international conventions and laws that have granted equal rights to LGBTQIA individuals worldwide.

Opposing these pleas, the Center and some states contended that the concept of “marriage” carries profound religious and cultural significance, making it subject to personal laws that necessitate a more comprehensive national and societal deliberation.

As the Supreme Court prepares to render its verdict, India and the world watch with bated breath. The outcome has the potential to shape the future of LGBTQ+ rights and equality in the country, ushering in a new era of inclusivity and recognition.