Gay sex legalised by Delhi High Court
In a path-breaking judgment, the Delhi High Court on Thursday legalised gay sex among consenting adults, holding that the law making it a criminal offence violates fundamental rights. However, Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalises homosexuality, will continue for non-consensual and non-vaginal sex.
"We declare that Section 377 of IPC in so far as it criminalises consensual sexual acts of adults in private is violative of Articles 14, 21 and 15 of the Constitution," a bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Murlidhar said.
The high court said, "The provision of Section 377 of the IPC will continue to govern non-consensual penile non-vaginal sex and penile non vaginal sex involving minors".
The court further clarified that "by adults we mean everyone who is 18 years of age or above".
It further said that this judgment will hold till Parliament chooses to amend the law.
"In our view, Indian constitutional law does not permit the statutory criminal law to be held captive by the popular misconception of who the LGBTs (lesbian gay bisexual transgender) are. It cannot be forgotten that discrimination is the antithesis of equality and that it is the recognition of equality which will foster dignity of every individual," the bench said in its 105-page judgment.
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