RSS, affiliate welcome Supreme Court verdict on same sex marriage

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and its offshoots welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision not legalise same sex marriages and barring couples from adoption

Updated - October 17, 2023 08:15 pm IST

Published - October 17, 2023 07:08 pm IST - New Delhi

 A LGBTQ+ rights activist at the premises of the Supreme Court during pronouncement of verdict on same-sex marriages by the apex court in New Delhi on October 17, 2023.

A LGBTQ+ rights activist at the premises of the Supreme Court during pronouncement of verdict on same-sex marriages by the apex court in New Delhi on October 17, 2023. | Photo Credit: Shashi Shekhar Kashyap

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its affiliate Vishwa Hinsu Parishad (VHP) welcomed the Supreme Court’s majority view which held that non-heterosexual couples cannot claim an unqualified right to marry. The Sangh, which since the beginning had maintained that LGBTQ relationship is a ‘disorder’, had attempted to evolve with time and give ‘acceptance’ to queer couples but its affiliates have always taken remained reluctant in engaging on this issue.

Minutes after the five bench judgement on LGBTQ was announced, the RSS’s publicity in-charge, Sunil Ambekar took to X (formerly Twitter) and said that the decision is welcome.

“Our democratic parliamentary system can seriously discuss all the issues related to this and take appropriate decisions,” he added.

Alok Kumar, the central working president of the VHP also issued a press statement welcoming the SC’s verdict to not to give legal recognition to gay marriage and adoption.

“We are satisfied that the Supreme Court which after listening to all the concerned parties including Hindu, Muslim and Christian followers, has given the decision that the relationship between two homosexuals is in the form of marriage, not eligible for registration. This is not even their fundamental right. Not giving homosexuals the right to adopt a child is also a good step,” he said.

Earlier in January, when the SC started the hearing of the LGBTQ case, in an interview with The Organiser, the English language mouthpiece of the RSS, Mohan Bhagwat, the Sangh chief, has been quoted as saying that the Hindu society does not see the transgender community as a problem and added that LGBTQ people should have their own private and social space as well.

He further maintained that people with such proclivities have always been there; for as long as humans have existed. He also added that because he is a veterinarian, he knows that such traits are found in animals too. “This is biological, a mode of life,” he further said.

RSS general secretary, Dattatreya Hosabale, in 2016 had said at a public event that homosexuality is not a crime as long as it does not affect the lives of others. He, at a press meet in 2023, however maintained that marriages can only happen between individuals of the opposite genders.

Earlier this year, the Samvardhinee Nyas, a wing of the Rashtra Sevika Samiti (the women’s parallel of the RSS), has conducted a survey across the country among doctors, allied medical professionals (such as physiotherapists and psychologists), and AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa Rigpa, and Homeopathy) practitioners, on their observations on those who identify as queer.

The initial findings of the survey had found that medical practitioners who took the survey believe homosexuality is a disorder (60.69%). Many do not recommend marriage rights for the LGBTQ+ community (84.2%).

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