“Gay Sex Is A Criminal Offence”, Rules Supreme Court; A Jolt To Gay Rights In India

Posted on December 11, 2013 in Society

As reported by NDTV:

The Supreme Court today said gay sex between consenting adults remains a criminal offence, in a major setback for the largely closeted homosexual community in India.

The top court today said that the Delhi High court’s 2009 order decriminalising homosexuality is constitutionally unsustainable.

The Delhi High Court had decriminalised homosexuality while reading down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code and ruled that sex between two consenting adults in private would not be an offence.

The high court order had been challenged by anti-gay rights activists, social and religious organisations.

Senior BJP leader BP Singhal, who died last year, had challenged the verdict calling it illegal, immoral and against the ethos of Indian culture.

Religious organisations such as the All India Muslim Personal Law Board, Utkal Christian Council and Apostolic Churches Alliance also filed appeals against that verdict.

The Supreme Court had reserved its order in March last year, after day-to-day hearing in the case lasted an entire month. While hearing the appeal, the top court had pulled up the Centre for its “casual” approach in dealing with homosexuality and expressed concern over Parliament not discussing such issues and instead blaming the judiciary for its alleged overreach.

During the arguments, the Centre told the top court that the anti-gay law in the country was a result of the British colonialism and that the Indian society was more tolerant towards homosexuality.

It was a complete U-turn by the Centre which had strongly opposed the decriminalisation of homosexuality before the High Court, calling it “unnatural, immoral and reflection of a perverse mind.”

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