Published On: Thu, Sep 6th, 2018

India’s Apex Court Lifts Ban On Gay Sex

Celebrations sparked in India on Thursday when the apex court lifted ban on gay sex. The landmark judgment was welcomed by LGBTQ activists on the scrapping of a colonial-era ban, which means Parts of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code will become irrational, indefensible and manifestly arbitrary. Consensual unnatural sex would no more be treated as an offence in India. Homosexuality is now legal.

India's Apex Court Lifts Ban On Gay Sex

Earlier gay sex was punishable by up to 10 years in prison. In 2009 the Delhi High Court made the act as legal. In 2013 the Supreme Court reinstated gay sex as a criminal offence.

Chief Justice Dipak Misra said, “Any consensual sexual relationship between two consenting adults – homosexuals, heterosexuals or lesbians – cannot be said to be unconstitutional.”

Some of the supporters became emotional following the verdict. The LGBT community waved banners and shouted slogans like “Gay and Proud” and “I am who I am.” Sweets were distributed as part of the celebration in cities like Mumbai and Bengaluru. One of them petitioners said, “I’m so excited, I have no words.”

Led by CJI Dipak Misra, the five-bench judge included Justices RF Nariman, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra.

The court said criminalization of such act was violation to the right to equality as well as the right to live with dignity. However, unnatural sex with animals and children will still be treated as criminal offence and will remain under Section 377.

Dealing with a clutch of petitions, the top court held that Section 377 was used as a weapon to harass members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) community, resulting in discrimination.

About the Author

- Paul Linus is an eminent online journalist who has been writing news, features and editorials on different websites from across the world for about a decade. He can be contacted at knowledgeherald@gmail.com

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