Campaigners celebrate as India decriminalises homosexuality


Celebrations have erupted in India after the supreme court unanimously ruled to decriminalise homosexual sex in a landmark judgment for gay rights.

A five-judge bench at the country’s highest court ruled that a 160-year-old law banning sex “against the order of nature” amounted to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and was unconstitutional.

The judgment, after 24 years of legal challenges, triggered elation among LBGT Indians and their allies across the country and plans for all-night parties in nightclubs in major cities.

In Mumbai, people marched carrying a giant rainbow banner; in Bangalore they draped themselves in the LBGT flag and let off scores of balloons. In Delhi’s luxury Lalit hotel, run by one of the activists who fought Thursday’s case, and home to one of the city’s furtively gay-friendly nightclubs, staff danced in the lobby.

“Criminalising carnal intercourse under section 377 Indian penal code is irrational, indefensible and manifestly arbitrary,” said the chief justice, Dipak Misra, in his decision, announced at about 11.30am on Thursday.


I saw this in the news as well. There are still punishments in some places such as Indonesia, there was a caning of two women there recently for being in a relationship. The Indonesian president seemed to speak against that punishment saying it did not reflect compassion.

There is a push to decriminalize in Singapore as well. A bit of a ripple effect.


Yes, many more countries are moving into the 21st century where being gay is no longer a crime.


It’s ridiculous that any country would criminalize homosexuality.


Homosexuality was not decriminalized in the United Kingdom until 1967 and it was still possible for gay people to be arrested in the US in many places for having sex in their own bedrooms until the US Supreme Court struck down all sodomy laws in the US in 2003 as they pertain to sex between consenting adults in private in Lawrence v. Texas.


Better late than never I suppose. I’m waiting for the inevitable CAF poster to bemoan the decriminalization.


Seems like US courts aren’t the only ones that are usurpers. Judges across the world grab power and make things up. Proponents of democracy should be outraged at this.


The majority of Americans have no problem with decriminalizing homosexuality and gay marriage. You’re free to disagree, but from where I stand, courts and legislators around the world are simply adapting to a changing culture where throwing people in jail for having sex with someone of their own gender is no longer a justifiable action. You’re certainly allowed your opinion, but to pretend that the courts have done anything inappropriate is little more than social conservatives raging at the dying of the light.


And it was rapid in its response:


I think you missed my point. Supposedly these countries are democracies. The will of the people is directly overridden by these judges who autocratically make these rulings. If these countries people wanted SSM it would be allowed by law.

You may think same sex ‘marriage’ is great. But hopefully you’d be troubled by a court that nullifies the democratic will of the people.


You must have missed that the law was against homosexual acts, not homosexual orientation, didn’t you? Or are intentionally conflating things?


These countries are also governed by the rule of law, and are not mobocracies. All have to one extent or another a division of powers. That we all may see outcomes we do not like from this nature of government is hardly a reason to make grand proclamations about “usurpation”.


A gang of black robes that usurps power is just as much a mob as any other.


The problem being there’s no usurpation of power at all. The US is not a classical democracy, it is a republic with separation of powers and checks and balances.


A branch of government can most certainly usurp power. A judge or executive can usurp power.


Most people in the West and in other places as well don’t think that homosexual acts between consenting adults in private should be against the law either. Even the Catholic Church is not in favor of criminalizing such acts unless I’m mistaken.


Didn’t have to wait long did you - sadly.


I’m waiting for the term “sodomites” to get thrown around.


I’ll bet you the price of a new pack of guitar strings it will appear with oh, say 20 posts or so max.


Regardless, “being gay” was not a crime.

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