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news details
SC reads down Section 377, says homosexuality not a crime
9/6/2018 3:14:43 PM
Agencies
In a welcoming judgement, the Supreme Court on Thursday partially repealed Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, decriminalising consensual gay sex thus bringing down a 158-year-old colonial law. The judgment was delivered by a five-member bench -- Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, Justices Rohinton Nariman, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra.

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

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had reserved its verdict on July 17 after hearing various stakeholders, including gay rights activists. The Centre, which had initially sought the adjournment for filing its response to the petitions, had later left to the wisdom of the court the issue of the legality of the penal provision with regard to the aspects of criminalising consensual unnatural sex between two consenting adults. The Centre had said that the other aspects of the penal provision dealing with minors and animals should be allowed to remain in the statute book.
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