The Indian discipline was always built around unenforced social and family norms; not state laws. Self-restraint and shyness were the tools to regulate the deviants from the norms, not the police or courts. Even today, it is this non-formal moral order—read dharma—not the laws of Parliament or State assemblies, that largely governs this society.
Homosexuals displaced the Economic Survey for the year 2008-09 from the headlines of most media on July 3, 2009. New headings such as, “Historic bench mark”; “Sexual equality”; “Landmark Judgement” appeared in the media. This is how the media had headlined the Delhi High Court judgement holding Sec. 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which makes homosexual acts offences in law, partly unconstitutional. Sec. 377 of the Indian Penal Code was not Manu’s code. It was Macaulay’s. This colonial law made homosexuality punishable. In Judo-Christian tradition homosexuality was seen an act against the law of God, punishable even with death. The Islamic rules also prescribed capital punishment for the offence. In all Abrahamic traditions the hostility to homosexuality originated in the story associated with a city as Sodom [the etymological source of the world ‘sodomy’] where the sexual sin was first committed according to their texts, though the respective accounts varied. This is the philosophy of the law against homosexuals in Abrahamic societies. Macaulay’s law reflected their theological position. Earlier, there was no state law in India to punish homosexuality. Does that mean that the Hindu—read Indian—tradition approved of homosexuality?
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