Section 377 verdict: Pride wins over prejudice
In a historic judgement, the Supreme Court (SC) of India on Thursday ruled that sexual intercourse between consenting adults of the same sex is not a crime, accepting that sexual orientation is natural and people have no control over it. A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra announced its verdict on the validity of Section 377 today, revoking the law criminalising consensual gay sex
Image by : Francis Mascarenhas/Reuters
The verdict assumes significance in the light of the earlier round of litigation. The Delhi high court had, in July 2009, decriminalised sex between consenting adults in private by declaring as unconstitutional a part of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that criminalises unnatural sex, saying “the section denies a gay person a right to full personhood…” However, the Supreme Court chose to reverse the verdict in December 2013, saying it was for the legislature to take a call on the desirability of the controversial provision.