The Envelope of Freedom, as some lawyers put it, contained my fate. Never before have I taken such keen interest in the ongoing of a court proceeding, as that of today’s Supreme Court judgment on Section 377.
Oscar Wilde, the celebrated English playwright, and author of many stories, was imprisoned for being gay. The same pre-Colonial law, the infamous Section 377, was applied to his verdict. He died a broken man, away from his country—because he stood for “the love that dare not speak its name“.
I shall no longer be persecuted for ‘acting against the order of nature’. I shall no longer have to hide a part of my identity. I might still be a ‘miniscule minority’, but the Indian justice system has stood by me today. It has told me that in the world’s largest democracy (and one of the oldest civilisations of the world) I matter!
With its judgement on Section 377, India has allowed me to feel, for the first time in my entire life, that an individual matters—I matter, my vote matters! That, even though society might still be in two minds about my sexuality, Indian courts of law will stand by me. The Indian judiciary has given me protection against discrimination that the political leaders we voted for were not able to.
India has given me sovereignty over my body.
Today, thanks to supreme Supreme Court, I am no longer a criminal. The Supreme Court upholds my right to individual self-determination. I am, in true sense, now an equal in the world’s largest democracy.