first_img Geeta Mohan New DelhiJuly 12, 2019UPDATED: July 12, 2019 21:44 IST Members and supporters of the LGBT groups at Delhi’s Queer Pride march. (PTI Photo)India maintained its past position on LGBTQ rights by abstaining from voting at the UN Human Rights Council on a resolution moved by Latin American states seeking to renew the mandate of independent expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI).This, despite a massive campaign in India ahead of the voting, asking Indian authorities to vote in favour of the resolution after the Supreme Court struck down Section 377, decriminalising homosexuality.In the run up to the voting, political leaders of various parties took to Twitter to express their support to a change.org petition that “urgently called for India to move away from its past trend of abstaining from voting on resolutions related to LGBTQ rights at the United National Human Rights Council and to vote in favour of a crucial resolution on LGBTQ rights”.This petition was initiated by Pune resident Varun Sardesai, urging India to change its stance on LGBTQ rights at the UNHRC, since the Supreme Court delivered a landmark judgment last year.Members of Parliament Shashi Tharoor and Supriya Sule, former MP Priya Dutt and Mahila Congress National General Secretary Apsara Reddy also tweeted in support of the resolution.Apsara Reddy said, “About 8 per cent of India’s population – 104 million individuals belong to the LGBT community in India. I have signed this petition urging Modiji to vote in favour of SOGI resolution at UN. Please sign this petition that pushes for dignity for all.”Shashi Tharoor also supported the petition saying, “I urge our government to vote in favour of renewal.”Congress leader Priya Dutt also supported the petition saying, “It is time India votes progressively.”NCP MP Supriya Sule said, “At this crucial juncture of the vote at the UNHRC, I request Honourable Prime Minister of India to vote progressively in support of the LGBT community as the SOGI resolution comes for vote. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has decriminalised Section 377 and it is now time for India to uphold the LGBT rights.”While India had reasons to abstain in the past, the legal situation has changed after the unanimous decision of Supreme Court in the Navtej Singh Johar versus Union of India case in 2018.Former CJI Dipak Mishra and Justice J Khanwilkar had noted then, “Section 377 IPC also assumes the characteristic of unreasonableness for it becomes a weapon in the hands of the majority to seclude, exploit and harass the LGBT community. It shrouds the lives of the LGBT community in criminality and constant fear mars their joy of life. They constantly face social prejudice, disdain and are subjected to the shame of being their very natural selves. Thus, an archaic law, which is incompatible with constitutional values, cannot be allowed to be preserved.”Therefore, while Section 377 does not particularly deal with homosexuality and same sex relationships are still not recognised by the Indian state, the order of the court striking down the law very specifically mentions protection against discrimination.The judgment hails human rights for all under the Constitution. The judgment has not been opposed by the Union government.Also Read | Not my fault I was born gay: 19-year-old commits suicide over homophobiaAlso Watch | History owes an apology to LGBT people, says SCFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bySanchari Chatterjee India abstains from voting for LGBTQ rights at UN Human Rights CouncilDespite India decriminalising homosexuality, it abstained from voting in favour of LGBTQ rights at the United Nations Human Rights Council.advertisement Nextlast_img

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