Last edited: February 14, 2005

Indian Gay Suit Seeks to Decriminalize Gay Sex

365GAY.COM, December 8, 2001

By Newscenter Staff

New Delhi—A gay rights group is asking the Delhi High Court to issue a restraining order preventing the government from treating male homosexual relations as a crime.

The suit was filed by the Naz Foundation which had been charged earlier this year with promoting criminal acts in its AIDS information.

The government has until January 28 to file its response to the suit.

In a statement the Foundation said that the criminalization of gay sex not only violates the right to life and liberty as provided in the Indian Constitution, but is also an impediment in effective control of AIDS.

Under Indian law homosexual acts are punishable with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The Foundation’s brief said that the law provides moral and legal sanction for the continued social discrimination of sexuality minorities.

"These social effects in turn drive gay men underground, with a devastating impact upon the AIDS prevention effort. Once underground, they become extremely vulnerable to AIDS because it becomes difficult for them to negotiate safe sexual behaviours," the petitioner said. "It also becomes difficult to identify and target this population for AIDS prevention efforts through education and medical services," it said.

[Home] [News] [India]