Families of a lesbian couple who got married in India are trying to get them arrested
The families of a lesbian couple who got “married” in India are trying to seek legal action against the women because they disapprove of their partnership.
25-year-old Sahana and 21-year-old Shilpa ran away from their disapproving families in order to start a fresh life together in Koramangala, India.
Although same-sex marriage is still not legal in the country, the two held an unofficial ceremony to symbolise their love for each other at a temple in the region.
The two started their relationship a few years ago, but Shilpa is from an orthodox family who tried to stop her from seeing her partner.
The pair decided to run away so they could believe together but Shilpa’s family filed a missing person report.
The family also reported their wedding to the authorities, as well as their “sexual activity”.
Police have not followed the case up because it is not within their jurisdiction unless one of the females ledges a report.
However, they have referred the couple to a counsellor because they deem their relationship to be morally wrong.
While sexual activity between two people of the same sex is officially illegal underneath section 377 of Indian law, a Supreme Court ruling in 2013 made it incredibly difficult to actually prosecute under the law.
The couple is seeking help from a local NGO which works to help LGBT couples living in India.
A former public prosecutor, S Doreraju, said that the couple should face prosecution because of their “psychological imbalance”.
“Lesbian marriage is not recognised and is a punishable offence under Section 377, provided one of them becomes a complainant.
“Parents of both the women can also lodge a complaint but not under IPC section 377. They can give other reasons such as ‘psychological imbalance’ or ‘negatively influencing’ the other woman,” Doreraju said.
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Benhur Samson, who now lives in Chicago, charges $5,000 for the service that matches up potential couples.
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Rishi and Dan married, after they met in 2011, performing all of the traditions of a ‘big fat Hindu wedding’.