A milestone judgement by an Indian court !

Dear Friends,

In a 105 page judgement delivered by the Hon'ble Chief Justice of the High Court of Delhi(Mr.Justice Ajit Prakash Shah) and Hon'ble Dr Justice S.Muralidhar; apparently some portions of the section377 of the Indian Penal Code have been declared null and void.

The provision criminalized even an act of consensual sex between adults of same sex in private an offence-a non-bailable crime with punishment of 8 to 10 years.

The High Court of Delhi of yesterday(2 July 2009) found the Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code " insofar as it criminalises consensual sexual acts of adults in private, is violative of Articles 21, 14 and 15 of the Constitution" .

Let us hope that appropriate measures are taken to ensure its effective application in all parts of India.

The detailed judgement can be read by accessing the following link.

To read this decision go to: http://lobis. nic.in/dhc/

Click on judgment date and choose July 2, 2009.


Regards and best wishes,

Dr.Rajesh Gopal.

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Comment by Dr Rajesh Gopal on July 13, 2009 at 10:55am
I am in complete agreement with Geoff and Mari Jo.We cannot proceed any further without inclusion.Directed and sustained pursuits for the same necessitate a lot of private and public acts.Active involvement of the LGBT community in a more meaningful way at the different levels is just one of efforts which need to be made with more conviction and commitment.Specific approaches need to be shared for similar facilitation in other areas.

Regards and best wishes,

Rajesh Gopal.
Comment by MariJo on July 12, 2009 at 6:58pm
Well, I would easily agree in that any single step forward is to be celebrated and no doubt that have a law in place to protect people's rights is a big step.
But I think of the question Geoff as posed about what we do to ensure inclusion. Because there is not much that a law can do if the people do not change attitudes towards sexuality, sexual identities and sexual options. Laws are there to regulate public abuses but they cannot change private behaviours, while a generalized change in citizens attitudes make the action of justice almost unnecesary.
Inclusion should be acted from the private and be ensured by the public laws. Rarely happens the other way round.
Comment by Laurence Gilliot on July 11, 2009 at 7:27pm
I think this will make the life of many of our Indian friends easier and more enjoyable.
It is great news!

I recently visited Burundi were a discriminating law against MSM was just approved by court... a real step back.


Comment by Dr Rajesh Gopal on July 11, 2009 at 2:16pm
Any legislation can never ensure a social change in isolation.

It may be just another catalyst of the process which has to be facilitated at the grassroots with a leadership from the civil society organizations.

We as individuals and organizations have to adopt inclusive partnerships to bring about the desired changes both in in the mindsets and the prevailing realities.

In no case can anyone be judgmental and discriminatory towards fellow humans.
Comment by Geoff Parcell on July 11, 2009 at 1:36pm

A court of law is usually a final resort to get something changed. What can we as individuals do to ensure inclusion?



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