By Madhushree Deb:
The Supreme Court of India has recently passed the verdict on Article 377Â Â that consensual intercourse between two adults of the same sex is a crime and it has put the majority of our nation into a big shock.
I believe that it was definitely a black day for the Indian Judicial system for having enforced a law which snatches away a very basic right. I call it a sheer injustice to those individuals of our countries who are still fighting a long battle of establishing their entities. Though I strongly oppose the judgment of the Supreme Court but I have nothing against the court itself. It is because the same court would defend my right to express myself and speak against it and thus, I am a proud citizen of this democratic country. But this proud citizen of India has a question to all her fellow citizens, where are we?
We are protesting against the verdict and opposing the supporters of the verdict but have we raised this simple question to ourselves, where are we? Every time we see a eunuch passing by, we mock them. We make fun of homosexuals and bisexuals in public, we tease transgenders wherever we spot them and we continue insulting them without even realizing that we are hurting their sentiments in some way or the other. We always outcast someone who we think is different from the masses. So, in the era of “Mangalyan”, super computer “Param” and with the highest youth population in the world, where are we?
We are challenging the verdict of the Supreme Court which is bound to change one fine day, but are we ready to change? We know that homosexuality existed from time immemorial, then why do we show our backs to it? Why don’t the schools and colleges have another option for gender in their admission forms? Why don’t the eunuchs of our country get educated and become scientists, engineers or politicians instead of begging on streets? It is all because we haven’t changed our age old attitude that they are unacceptable in our society.
A country’s modernization does not depend only on its technology, economy and education system. We know that even if a nation is scientifically advanced, it can not be called ‘developed‘ if its citizens do not have even basic rights. There is no need for any countrywide protest or angry vigils if we make enough room for every choice and preference in our hearts, every human will have equal rights. Homosexuals, bisexuals and transgenders are not different people, they are just like us. Having a different sexual orientation does not alienate them from the rest of the human beings. So many of them are still fighting to come out of their closets because their families and our society do not accept them. Most of the families force their homosexual children to marry a person of the opposite sex so that no disgrace can touch the families’ reputation.
We cannot impose our conventional ideas on them just because some religious ideas have been planted in our minds and we have accepted them without any question. We must change for the betterment of our society. We must understand that everything in the world cannot be only black or white, there are shades of grey too. It is very unfortunate on our part that that some citizens had to knock the door of the judiciary for something which was rightfully theirs and it was denied to them. Homosexuals do have the birthright to have consensual sex, get married, adopt children and live a life of dignity.
Same sex relationship is neither a disease nor a psychological deformity. Homosexuality is natural and consensual sex between two adults can never be a crime. When we accept this, our society as a whole will accept it and the highest authority of justice has to agree to it for it is very much a part of our own system and not separate from us.
I request all my country’s citizen to unite for this cause. This is not a fight against the judiciary but a fight against our own irrational belief. We must change the superstitious societal norms which have been dictating us for centuries. Let’s dream for a new India where every citizen enjoys their fundamental rights and feels safe to express their own sexuality.