India's Supreme Court Legalizes Gay Sex In Historic Ruling | AsianCrush
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India’s Supreme Court Legalizes Gay Sex In Historic Ruling

Otter Lee September 6, 2018 September 7th, 2018

Tears, cheers, and rainbows flourished outside India’s Supreme Court House in New Dehli.

For 157 years, homosexual activity had been ruled a offense punishable with up to 10 years in jail under the colonial era law, section 337, but today’s ruling changed all that. Section 337 technically banned both oral and anal sex, but its focal target had been the LBGT population, who often felt terrorized by police officers enforcing the rule. The draconian measure also compared homosexual activity to bestiality.

The five judges on the court unanimously ruled in favor of decriminalizing gay sex. Reading the court’s deliberation, Chief Justice Diprak Misra declared “Criminalising carnal intercourse is irrational, arbitrary and manifestly unconstitutional.”

Justice Indu Malhotra added that “history owes an apology” to LGBT individuals in India for unfairly discriminating against them.

Justice DY Chandrachud also elaborated that the state should have no control over the private lives of those in the LBGT community. To deny consenting adults their right to sexual orientation is a violation of privacy and human rights.

Several extremely vocal conservative groups had attempted to prevent LBGT people from being allowed to practice sexual activities. They protested a bid to overturn the law from 2001 to 2009. When the High Court ruled in favor of decriminalization in 2009, the Supreme Court was pressured by such entities to repeal the ruling in 2013.

While this ruling marks a major victory for LBGT people in India, activists and advocates have no doubt that opposition and harassment will persist.

LBGT activist Harish Iyer said “I’m absolutely elated. It’s like a second freedom struggle where finally we have thrown a British law out of this country…” Iyer also believes that “the next step would be to get anti-discrimination laws in place, or anti-bullying laws.”

Across social media and around the world, people celebrated the landmark supreme court decision.

The road to true equality and acceptance may still be a long one, but for now, India has taken one great leap towards progress.

 

https://twitter.com/akshaykumar/status/1037636536890732544

https://twitter.com/jvn/status/1037727910411620352

Via BBC