Rights of LGBTQIA+ by ANJU ESTHER BALAKRISHNAN at LEXCLIQ.

Individual freedom has spread like wildfire across the world, stressing the acknowledgment of human rights, the right to equality, and the right to freedom of speech and expression. Lesbian, homosexual, bisexual, transgender, and questioning people’s human rights are an important problem that has gotten a lot of attention because to this movement. Human rights are based on the assumption that all people are equal. It is based on the concept that all persons have dignity and that anything that undermines that dignity is a breach of humanity’s core principles. The concept of such fundamental rights that ensure equality and freedom is recognized in most constitutions across the world. Gender flexibility and same-sex relationships have long been depicted in ancient Indian literature and art. The British colonial authorities formally brought the legislation criminalizing homosexuality to India in 1862, when they placed it under “unnatural crimes” in Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. Even in the twenty-first century, this rule, which punishes anybody who willingly engages in “carnal intercourse against the order of nature” with any man or woman, remained the most significant obstacle to LGBTQs’ full expression of sexuality and identity in India.

While the Supreme Court’s decisions in 2014, 2017, and 2018 are regarded milestones in terms of their expansive interpretations of constitutional rights and empowerment of LGBTQ people, their breadth of application was still restricted. The legislature has the ability to make laws in India’s constitutional framework. The legislature’s passage of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019, was meant to safeguard transgender people’s rights by preventing workplace discrimination, education, healthcare, and access to government and private institutions. The Trans community, on the other hand, rejected it because it contained several clauses that were detrimental to their Fundamental Rights, such as the requirement that a district magistrate issue a certificate of identity recognizing them as “transgender” only after they had sex reassignment surgery. Furthermore, as instructed by the Supreme Court, the Act contained no measures to assure equality of opportunity in education and employment. In the absence of sufficient anti-discrimination laws, LGBTQ persons in India are still a long way from being acknowledged as equals and free individuals in society, despite important successes in the legal struggle.

In the case of the Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India, the Supreme Court ruled to strike down a provision of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that criminalized “consensual sexual behavior between adults of the same sex,” thereby legalizing consensual sex between individuals of the same gender. This was the outcome of a long legal battle that began in 2001, when a writ petition was filed in the Delhi High Court challenging the constitutionality of section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, alleging that it violated the rights to equality, freedom of expression, and life and personal liberty, including the right to privacy, dignity, and health.

The legislation advances in tandem with the country’s development, and homosexual rights have progressed as well. Even though India does not recognize marriage between individuals of the same sex, as time passes, greater rights for them will undoubtedly be legislated. Everyone has the right to equal treatment, and the rights granted must be equal as well.

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