YKA Contributors Answer Our Call To #RaiseYourVoice Against Section 377, And How!

Posted on February 3, 2016 in LGBTQ

By YKA Staff

As the Supreme Court heard a curative petition to reconsider its judgement on Section 377 that criminalises homosexuality in the country, loud and clear messages were heard demanding a scrapping of this draconian law.

Joining us on Youth Ki Awaaz were some of the most powerful voices in the country who spoke on why it is imperative that the SC rethink its decision.

And the same call, to #RaiseYourVoice against this injustice that denies a life of dignity to many Indians was heard and raised by our most amazing readers.

Our community of contributors at Youth Ki Awaaz sent in an overwhelming number of messages, expressing their thoughts on Section 377, showing us just how powerful it is to #RaiseYourVoice.

Here are some of the comments we received:

Image Source: Reuters
Image Source: Reuters

“In this day and age, when we are trying to become multi-planetary species, invent cures for hitherto incurable diseases and creating technology that has never been thought of before, if as a nation we’re criminalize, RE-CRIMINALIZE (absurd!), a natural act and deem it as ‘unnatural’ then we are doomed.

Just the fact that it is happening in our society, with people without any artificial interventions is proof that what section 377 wishes to criminalize is in fact natural.”

– Sneheel Biswal

“I think Section 377 is a violation of our right to freedom, choice and equality. It’s no one else’s business to decide who I want to love, and living in a progressive world, any intervention from the “law” in my personal choices aren’t accepted. I hope section 377 is scrapped so people with different choices are treated equally and not as criminals.”

– Priyanka Gupta

“A person should have the right to decide his/her own sexuality, the way he/she wants to live one’s life, and to marry the person they want to.”

– Vimal Khanna 

Gay rights activists shout slogans during a protest against the verdict by the Supreme Court in Mumbai December 15, 2013. India's Supreme Court on Wednesday reinstated a ban on gay sex in the world's largest democracy, following a four-year period of decriminalisation that had helped bring homosexuality into the open in the socially conservative country. In 2009 the Delhi High Court ruled unconstitutional a section of the penal code dating back to 1860 that prohibits "carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal" and lifted the ban for consenting adults. The Supreme Court threw out that decision, saying only parliament could change Section 377 of the penal code, widely interpreted to refer to homosexual sex. Violation of the law can be punished with up to 10 years in jail. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui (INDIA - Tags: LAW SOCIETY) - RTX16JJD
REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

“The rights of LGBT community are not fixed up to sexual rights but it includes privacy rights, right to respect, right to honour, right to dignity, right to pride, right to equality, right to life and liberty, right to non-discrimination, right to Constitutional right, right to legal right, etc. Let India rise with equality and respect.”

– Mukesh Bharti 

“The American Psychiatric Association (APA) removed homosexuality from its official Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) in 1973. In 1967, homosexual acts were decriminalized in England and Wales.

Around 22 countries, including UK, allow same-sex marriages. So why is India still stuck with a colonial law? It is because we have hypocritical politicians. It is time to speak up. To free love from narrow interpretations of culture and religion by the uninformed majority.

This law is forcing the LGBT+ community into closeted lives and blighted marriages. Unfortunately, even psychiatrists, who should know better, are biased against LGBTs; they encourage conformity to ‘norms’. It is time to show up their narrow mindsets in the light of reason and logic.”

– Anand Rao

pride parade cropped“If we demand a right to be able to wear the clothes of our choice, eat the food of our choice, then marrying the person of our choice should not be a problem.

Since time unknown, anything that went against the ways of those in power has been considered wrong, but human beings are a complex species; if we acknowledge the fact that different people have different opinions, then we must also understand that different people have different choices, even in terms of sexuality.

If honour killings are criminal, then so is barring two lovers from being together; if rapes are criminal, then so is forcing a homosexual against their will.

Criminalizing homosexuality has affected the viewpoint of the society towards them. We need this decriminalization to happen in order to save the sanctity of human rights!”

– Pratibha Agarwal

“Every individual has rights under the constitution of India to live, choose their partners. It does not matter whether he or she chooses same sex partners or different. SC should scrap this law. I am totally in favour of this.”

– Onkar Nath

“The Supreme Court should scrap Section 377 because only love can fight hatred. We are already living in a world of unfairness, injustice and violence. And we do not need more of that. By scrapping section 377, we are taking a step towards accepting one another for who we really are. We are bringing in change and difference in society. We will create a generation of children that will look beyond difference, a generation of children that will learn acceptance and take it forward with them. Moreover, we are giving the LGBT community the right to love freely and fearlessly. Love always has a positive domino effect, the more people are free to love, the more people will love, and the more the love will spread. Scrapping 377 is the path to acceptance, it is the path to a more tolerant and beautiful India.”

– Meera Pattni

lgbt 2“I support homosexuality not because I’m gay but it’s completely natural to be gay. Homosexual behaviour is observed in 1500 species but bigotry is found in only one, what seems more natural now?

I feel that Section 377 of the Indian penal code which criminalizes consensual non penile-vaginal intercourse between adults should be amended because it’s completely unconstitutional. It violates my right to privacy (guaranteed under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution). Not only that, Section 377 has caused many problems.

Some of us were blackmailed and asked for ransom. A law which is a danger for 2.5 million gays (Govt told the
Supreme court in 2012 ) should be amended. It’s high time that India should make a change in Section 377 and let people live their life in their own way.”

– Ankush Gupta

“There’s a reason why the narrow often accompanies the straight;
The path can give its travellers a stiff gait.

If only one dared to steer,
What earlier seemed queer

Would appear as the same blackbird that can be seen
In ways no fewer, if not more, than thirteen.

So before pronouncing judgment on your equal born
Tell me if you see the same face in the mirror every morn.”

– Ankita Anand 

At Youth Ki Awaaz, we believe that “public opinion is the new superpower”, and our contributors prove it time and again. It is heart-warming to receive such a response, and if we all join in to raise our voice, then change is definitely possible.

If you haven’t used your superpower yet, what are you waiting for? Write to us now!