Section 377: All You Need To Know

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Article 377 of the Criminal Code of India states: “Whoever voluntarily has carnal relations against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal shall be punished with life imprisonment or imprisonment of any of the descriptions for a period that may extend to ten years., and will also be liable for fine. ” In short, Section 377 is an archaic law that was introduced during the British era in the 1860s and makes gay sex a crime for which punishment can be a lifelong term.

This also has implications for heterosexuals, since consensual sexual acts of adults – oral and anal sex in private – are currently considered unnatural and punishable under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code.

In 2009, the Delhi High Court described Section 377 as a violation of fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution. The religious groups, however, had appealed against the decision in the Supreme Court.

In 2013, the Supreme Court canceled the order of the supreme court in Delhi and re-criminalized homosexuality. He said it was the job of the parliament to decide on the elimination of laws.

The decision that gay sex is a criminal offense was seen as a major setback for human rights and was also widely criticized. Although prosecutions under section 377 have been rare, activists have said that police used the law to harass and intimidate members of the LGBT community.

After the decision of the Supreme Court in 2013, the outstanding leader of the BJP, Rajnath Singh, had said: “We support Section 377 because we believe that homosexuality is an unnatural act and can not be supported.” On the contrary, Arun Jaitley, leader of the BJP, had said: “When millions of people around the world have alternative sexual preferences, it is too late to raise the opinion that they should be imprisoned.”

Congressional leaders Rahul Gandhi, P Chidambaram, Shashi Tharoor, Trinamool Congress leader Derek O ‘Brien, CPI leader (M) Brinda Karat, the Aam Aadmi party among others have supported the LGBT community and have said that the Homosexuality should be decriminalized.