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After India, Australian court rejects law allowing gay marriages

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Canberra, Dec 13: Two days after the Supreme Court of India announced that "homosexuality is a criminal offence", the Australia's highest court on Friday 'rejected' law allowing gay marriages.

In India, the apex court reversed the 2009 High Court decision to 'decriminalise' homosexuality.

According to the news agency AP, the Australian court struck down a landmark law on Thursday that had begun allowing the country's first gay marriages, shattering the dreams of more than two dozen same-sex newlyweds whose marriages will now be annulled less than a week after their weddings.

In India, the SC reversed the 2009 HC decision to 'decriminalise' homosexuality.

"The Marriage Act does not now provide for the formation or recognition of marriage between same sex couples. The Marriage Act provides that a marriage can be solemnised in Australia only between a man and a woman," the court said in a statement issued alongside its ruling.

"That Act is a comprehensive and exhaustive statement of the law of marriage", it added.

The court's decision essentially nullifies the same-sex marriages, as it means the ACT law under which they were wed was invalid.

Outside the court in Canberra, a tearful Rodney Croome, national director of the advocacy group Australian Marriage Equality, flanked by several same-sex couples who were married in the past week, said the "ruling was a defeat for marriage equality but there had been a greater victory this week".

In its decision, the court wrote that the federal government is responsible for deciding whether same-sex marriage should be legalized.

However, Lyle Shelton, the managing director of Australian Christian Lobby, which opposes same-sex marriage, 'praised' the court ruling and said common sense had prevailed.

OneIndia News

(With agency inputs)

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