decriminalised in India
in the Indian capital, Delhi, has ruled that homosexual intercourse between
consenting adults is not a criminal act.
overturns a 148-year-old colonial law which describes a same-sex
relationship as an "unnatural offence". Homosexual acts were punishable by a
10-year prison sentence. Many people in India regard same-sex relationships
as illegitimate. Rights groups have long argued that the law contravened
Court ruled that the law outlawing homosexual acts was discriminatory and a
"violation of fundamental rights".
The court said that a statute in Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which
defines homosexual acts as "carnal intercourse against the order of nature"
and made them illegal, was an "antithesis of the right to equality".
Homosexuality is illegal in India with anal intercourse punishable by
life imprisonment under S377 of the Unnatural Offences Act. The act also applies
to oral sex. The courts in recent cases under the act have imposed much lighter
also criminalizes male to male sex with up to 10 years imprisonment.
Section 377, Unnatural Offences
Reproduced verbatim from the
28th Edition of The Indian Penal Code
Whoever voluntarily has
carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, women or
animal, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment
of either description for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall be
liable to fine.
The Acts (fall) into two
1. Sexual intercourse per OS
2. Manipulation and movement
of penis of the accused whilst being held by the victims in such a way as to
create orifice like thing for making manipulated movement of insertion and
withdrawal till ejaculation of semen.
Penetration is sufficient to constitute the carnal intercourse necessary to
the offence described in this section.
Comment: This section is intended to punish the
offence of sodomy, buggery and bestiality