India’s Homosexuals Quest For a Better Life
By admin July 20, 2018

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The Indian Supreme Court, this week, reserved its verdict on the issue of decriminalizing homosexuality. Queer rights activists across the nation are hopeful that this time would prove to be the last time they have to fight to decriminalize homosexual intercourse.


To provide a brief background, homosexuality is a criminal offence in India. It is punishable with fines or long-term or long-term to life imprisonment. Even though a lot people in politics do not want to touch Section 377 of Indian Penal Code, that criminalizes homosexual intercourse, it is considered a step backwards by India as liberal democracy by many. Groups supporting queer population and rights have filed petitions protesting the regressive law. It is these petitions that are being heard in court.


The petitioners have pointed out that Section 377 often leads to harassment and blackmailing of queer people, as homosexuality is illegal. A five-judge Bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra is deciding the constitutional validity of Section 377 regarding homosexuality. The bench, so far, has given a strong indication that it will declare that Section 377 violates the right under Article 21 (Right to life) of the LGBTQ community to sexuality, sexual orientation and choice of sexual partner.


Even if the Supreme Court repeals the law, Indian society still has to deal with the deep and dangerous stigma of being queer. Two women, in June, both married to men, jumped off a bridge in the western state of Gujarat. They left behind a suicide note that read, “We are leaving the world which will never allow us to be one.” Not only did they feel rejected by the society but also found no support groups through modern technology. Decriminalizing homosexuality will not save queer population like them overnight. However, it is a significant and much needed step.



Further reading:

India’s Battle for Same-Sex Love

Meet the elite engineers leading a challenge to India’s homosexuality ban

India’s LGBTQ Community Is Hopeful As Court Hears Challenge To Gay Sex Ban

‘A better life’: India moves a step closer to legalising gay sex

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