UK in India marks fourth anniversary of Section 377 judgment

UK in India marks fourth anniversary of Section 377 judgment

F.P. Report

LONDON: The British High Commission will host a reception today to mark the fourth anniversary of the landmark Indian Section 377 judgment. The judgment passed on 6 September 2018 by the Supreme Court of India decriminalised consensual sexual conduct between adults of the same sex. The landmark judgement has had major implications for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community.

The reception will see members of Indian business, civil society, NGOs working on human rights, and Consul Generals of other international missions coming together to celebrate and advance rights of the LGBT community. Justice DY Chandrachud, one of the five judges responsible for passing the historic judgment, has been invited to grace the celebration as the guest of honour.

Justice Dhananjaya Yeshwant Chandrachud, Honourable Judge of the Supreme Court of India, said:

While the decision in Navtej was momentous, we have a long way to go. The Beatles famously sang ‘All you need is love, love; Love is all you need’. At the risk of ruffling the feathers of music aficionados everywhere, I take the liberty to disagree with them and say – perhaps we need a little more than love. Structural changes as well as attitudinal changes are essential.

Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India, said:

Thank you to Justice Chandrachud and everyone joining today’s event to celebrate the fourth anniversary of the historic Section 377 judgement furthering LGBT rights in India. Earlier this year in July, the UK celebrated the 50th Anniversary of Pride in London. These are milestones in non-discrimination which remind us of where we have come, and what more we have to do, in the UK and in India. The UK in India family is proud to work with Indian organisations that promote diversity and inclusion and believe in equal rights for all.

Rudrani Chhetri, transgender model and activist, said:

I am honoured to attend today’s event organised by the British High Commission to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the Section 377 judgment. This historic judgment is protecting people from abuses and different forms of atrocities like blackmail and sexual violence that the LGBT community faced earlier. We are all less fearful now in expressing ourselves not just freely but proudly and believe this is a step forward in the right direction that upholds universal human rights.

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