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'Western Values’: VHP Slams India’s Top Court for 'Judicial Activism' on Same-Sex Marriage

© AP Photo / Tsering TopgyalPigeons fly past the dome of India's Supreme Court building in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2016.
Pigeons fly past the dome of India's Supreme Court building in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2016. - Sputnik India, 1920, 24.04.2023
The Indian Supreme Court’s decision to hear a case urging the legalization of same-sex marriage in the country has divided public opinion. India de-criminalized homosexuality in 2018, but same-sex marriage still remain illegal.
Top Hindu advocacy group Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has decried the “tearing hurry” with which India’s apex Supreme Court is adjudicating on the legalization of same-sex marriage in the country.
In a resolution at the end of the two-day national convention of its legal cell in Ayodhya on 22-23 April, the VHP underscored that there is “no grave urgency” to decide and determine the case on legalizing same-sex marriage.
The VHP accused the Supreme Court of “judicial activism” on the matter.
The influential Hindu group accused the court of “encroaching upon the sovereign powers of the Parliament”, alleging that Supreme Court was in favour of striking down a provision in the Special Marriage Act, 1954, which applies only to biological males and females.
“The marriage is a socio-legal institution which can be created, recognized, conferred with legal sanctity and regulated only by the competent legislature in exercise of its power under Article 246 of the Constitution of India,” it said.
It underlined that recognition of marriage is “essentially a legislative function” and the courts shouldn’t form their own “judicial interpretations” on the matter
A group of 50 petitioners have approached the apex court, demanding the regularization of same-sex marriage and argued that denying them the right violated their fundamental rights stipulated in Article 19 of the Indian Constitution.
Court - Sputnik India, 1920, 20.04.2023
Political Affairs
Legalisation of Same-Sex Marriage Requires Redefining Traditional Notion of Family: CJI
A five-judge constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Justice Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, began hearing the case last week. The next hearing is scheduled for 25 April.
The federal government has opposed the petitions, arguing before the bench that same-sex marriage was an “urban elitist concept”. However, the CJI-headed bench has rejected the argument, stating that that the top court has already decriminalized homosexuality through a judgement in 2018.

‘Superimposition’ of Western Values

The Hindu group said that marriage remained a “sacrosanct union of two heterosexuals” in India and not a “contract or agreement between two parties”, as per popular belief in western countries.
“Further in India the marriage is not merely a union of two individuals but also it is a union of two families and the reputation of the families is being tested on the basis of marriages in their respective families. Marriages in India is celebrated like festivals from time immemorial, which will not be possible in the cases if same sex marriage is allowed,” stated the VHP.
It said that the legalization of same-sex marriage would be akin to “superimposition” of western values and beliefs.

“Indian cultural civilisation has constantly been attacked for centuries but survived against all odds. Now in independent India it is facing attacks on its cultural roots by the superimposition of western thoughts, philosophies and practices which are not viable for this nation,” stated the VHP.

The VHP noted that marriage in India has a “civilisational importance” and called upon the Indian society to oppose the “weakening” of the institution of marriage.
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