India Enters The 21st Century : Indian Supreme Court to decriminalize homosexuality
The unanimous decision of the Indian Supreme Court to decriminalize homosexuality finally places the world’s largest democracy on the path of normality of free societies, where no citizen can be discriminated against because of their sexual orientation.
This basic right was violated by a law that does not even correspond to India as an independent State but was inherited directly from the British colonial period. The paradoxical result is that in the 21st century India – a plural society able to put satellites in orbit, with a vibrant cultural industry and that is betting on higher education for new technologies – until two days ago remained an unacceptable discrimination decreed by an outside power more than 150 years ago.
But not everything is the fault of the colonial period that ended in 1947. It is true that since that discrimination has been able to remain in force due to deep-seated prejudices for whose definitive improvement will require much more than the resolution of a court. A sample is that the sentence comes after a judicial battle started in 2001 and that in these 17 years passed no Indian government has wanted to amend the article of the Criminal Code that discriminated against homosexuals.
It is therefore a first step for the full recognition of rights to these Indian citizens. This milestone should now be accompanied by legislative measures that place them on an equal footing with the rest of their compatriots and here the Indian political authorities are no longer excused.
At a global level, the decriminalization of homosexuality in India is the realization that in democracies citizens can live their sexuality as they wish, not as a favor of any government or social group but as what it is: an inalienable right.