Gay Sex Debate: What’s the tone of Supreme Court’s Privacy Judgement?
In the age of consent, if one thinks of criminalising gay sex, then we will be happy to call them “unnatural”. This year on January 8, the gay sex issue has sparked fresh debate across the nation when the Supreme Court has decided to think over its 2013 decision in Suresh Kumar Kaushal vs Naz Foundation, which criminalised gay sex.
Legal Battle for Section 377: Why there is hope for India’s hurt “Pride” ?
The privacy judgment is no less than a milestone step on SC’s part to look into its 2013 verdict on Section 377 of Indian Penal Code. For the first time, under law, members belonging to the LGBTQ community will have hope to live their life with dignity which will be free of fear.
Questioning its own 2013 judgement, SC said that under Article 21 (right to life) of the Constitution, right to privacy is a fundamental right of the Indians. Therefore, the law cannot limit rights calling it unnatural. Further, a notice was also issued by SC to the centre seeking response to a writ petition, which was filed by five LGBTQ community members.
A different sexual orientation is no crime: Why Section 377 is unconstitutional?
Journalist Sunil Mehra, celebrity chef Ritu Dalmia, renowned dancer Navtej Singh Johar, and hotelier Aman Nath had filed a petition as aggrieved parties because they live in constant fear of police harassment because of their sexual preferences. The petitioners have urged SC to declare the “Right to Sexuality” as the “Right to Sexual Autonomy” and the “Right to Choice of a Sexual Partner” and to include it as part of the Right to Life guaranteed under Article 21.
Is there a shift in the mindset of the society we live in?
Indian society is not a homophobic society. It is very unlikely that a nation that celebrates films and books on LGBTQ communities will term gay sex as ‘unnatural’ or against the law. Therefore phobia surrounding homosexuality in this nation is quite odd and amusing at times. But there is no denying that over a long period of time religion and culture have played a very important role to create phobia against LGBTQ community. Hence, the stories of abuse and rejection from being a part of the society to pushing them to a corner has been continued and approved for years. If a nation stands on the foundation of acceptance, compassion and equality; there is no question that people in that country are liberal. The recent petitions have come forward with a logical approach and this is sure to create an impact in the long run in demystifying the homophobic issue.