Section 377: Supreme Court Says It Will Examine the Correctness of 2013 Verdict on Gay Sex
Section 377. (Photo Credits: Pixabay) Representational Image

New Delhi, July 10:  The Constitution bench of Supreme Court today is hearing the pleas seeking scrapping of Section 377 of IPC which criminalises homosexuality.  The Apex Court has said that it is ready to examine the correctness of the 2013 verdict on gay sex. According to a report on Scroll, the court is hearing the six petitions and interventions filed by NGO Naz Foundation, parents of queer people and Voices against 377. The apex court had on Monday rejected the Centre's plea seeking postponement of the proceedings.

According to a report on ANI, Mukul Rohatgi appearing for one of the petitioners said, "As society changes, values change, we can say, what is moral 160 years ago might not be moral today." He further said that Supreme Court has a duty to protect the queer community, as it is the protector of fundamental rights.

The case is being heard by the newly reconstituted bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra and comprise Justices R F Nariman, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra. They examined the petitions claiming that the 2013 judgment was wrong.

In 2009, the Delhi high court had decriminalised gay sex, ruling that a ban on a consensual sexual relationship between gay men is a violation of fundamental rights. Thus, legalising homosexual acts between consenting adults. However, Supreme Court had reversed the High Court order in December 2013, and pointed out that those indulging in gay sex will be prosecuted and sentenced under Section 377.

What is Section 377?

Section 377 refers to 'unnatural offences' and says whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal, will get life imprisonment, or with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to 10 years, and shall also be liable to pay a fine.

Several anxious LGBTQ activists are anxiously waiting for the apex court’s decision.