Many people argue that gay couples have all the same legal rights as straight couples – they say the only difference is that their relationship is not called a “marriage”. But this is massively contradicted in the case of Ali Choudhry. Basically, if you come to Australia and get married to an Australian citizen, you’re eligible to stay here. But if you can’t marry your partner (for example, because your partner is of the same sex as you), you could get deported, being forced to leave your partner behind. It’s worse in the case of Choudhry because he is set to be deported to Pakistan, a country where you can be imprisoned simply for being gay.
This is an injustice I’ll never have to face (for quite a few reasons), but it could affect plenty of great people I know. So please go to the DON’T DEPORT ALI CHOUDHRY website and take a few seconds to add your name to the list. Feel free to enter the Sydney City postcode of 2000 if you’re not an Australian resident. Here is some more information from the website:
Please grant Ali Choudhry a visa to remain in Australia. Ali is facing deportation to Pakistan this Wednesday after his application for a visa was refused, despite being in a relationship with his partner Matt for nearly four years. If deported, there is a risk Ali could be imprisoned for life in Pakistan, where being openly gay carries a long jail sentence. Having grown up in the United States, Ali is also unable to read or write the local language.
Why is this important?
Ali is facing deportation, back to a country where there is life imprisonment for being gay. He’s never lived in Pakistan and he doesn’t read the language.
Ali Choudhry and Dr Matthew Hynd were one of the first gay couples in Queensland to register their civil union on 12 March, 2012. Unfortunately their union was short lived due to the Queensland Government retrospectively making the unions null and void 12 weeks after their ceremony.
Nearly two years later Mr Choudhry now faces deportation to Pakistan after his application for a visa recognising his relationship with Dr Hynd was refused. He says he cannot understand why theirs is not considered a legitimate long-term partnership, and neither can I. Please help me build the public pressure urging Immigration Minister Scott Morrison to grant Ali a visa to remain in Australia.
Here is some more detailed information about Choudhry’s case.
Here are a couple of updates: