Could same-sex marriages or civil unions be a reality in India soon? The Supreme Court is geared up to hear pleas this month that address the controversial topic. While the government has opposed same-sex marriages, the SC has increasingly moved the needle on ideas of marriage, family, and women’s rights.

The Supreme Court will hear pleas related to same-sex marriage in January after at least four gay couples approached the top court to seek a legal nod for LGBTQ+ unions in the absence of which such couples do not have access to several rights that heterosexual couples do . The Central government has so far been opposed to same-sex marriages with a counsel for the administration in 2021 observing that Indian society was basically ‘ a socially recognized union of two individuals which is either governed by uncodified personal laws or codified statutory laws.’

The Centre’s counsel told the Delhi High Court in 2021, “There is no acceptance of the institution of marriage between two individuals of the same gender either in personal laws or codified statutory laws.” While the courts may formulate progressive laws, the success of these will depend on a transformed society.