The Supreme Court heard the petition challenging constitutionality of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for the third successive day. During the hearing the apex court made an observation that the social stigma attached to homosexuality will go away, once it is decriminalised, Deccan Chronicle has reported.
A five judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra observed, “The LGBT community feels the stigma because of the criminality attached to gay sex and, once it is removed, homosexuals can get together without any prohibition. The stigma is so because they are treated differently. Once decriminalisation is there they will feel empowered.”
Justice Indu Malhotra, the lone woman judge on the bench said that homosexuality is not a disorder but only a sexual variation, given that it is also present in animals.
Justice D Y Chandrachud remarked, “Over the years, we have created an environment in the Indian society which has led to deep-rooted discrimination against people of same sex involved in a consensual relationship and this has impacted their mental health also. The Mental Healthcare Act, 2017, also recognises that sexual orientation should not be grounds for discrimination”.
The bench also told that constitutional matters will not be decided on the basis of any referendum, when a counsel argued that homosexuality is against the popular will.
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