Same-Sex Marriage: Justice Sanjiv Khanna Recuses from Hearing Review Pleas

Same Sex Marriage

The Supreme Court judge, Justice Sanjiv Khanna recused himself from hearing review petitions challenging the apex court’s decision last year to deny legal recognition to same-sex marriage, sources revealed. Justice Khanna cited personal reasons for his recusal.

Justice Khanna’s recusal will require CJI D Y Chandrachud to reconstitute a new five-judge constitution bench to consider the review pleas.

On 9th July, the Apex Court had declined an open court hearing for the pleas seeking a review of last year’s judgment.

In a significant setback for gay rights activists, a five-judge constitution bench led by Chandrachud had, on October 17 of the previous year, denied legal recognition to same-sex marriage, stating that there was “no unqualified right” to marriage except for those recognized by law.

However, the apex court strongly advocated for the rights of queer individuals to ensure they do not face discrimination in accessing goods and services available to others. It also called for the establishment of ‘Garima Greh’ (safe houses) in all districts to provide shelter for community members facing harassment and violence, and the creation of dedicated hotline numbers for emergencies.

A five-judge bench comprising CJI Chandrachud along with justices Sanjiv Khanna, Hima Kohli, B V Nagarathna, and P S Narasimha, was set to review the judgment in chambers. According to practice, review pleas are considered in chambers by judges.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte