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Indian Court Defers Gay Rights Hearing

Indian Court Defers Gay Rights Hearing


The Supreme Court of India said Monday that it would defer until April hearing all petitions regarding the landmark gay rights decision that decriminalized gay sex.

According to Tehelka, "The Bench, comprising Justice GS Singhvi and Justice AK Ganguly, was hearing several petitions filed by political, social and religious organisations opposing the Delhi High Court order that decriminalised homosexuality. The Bench said, 'We have read through all the 19 petitioners and there is substantial matter in all. Hence, we will hear all the 19 petitions.'"

Of the 19 petitions, four support the 2009 Delhi High Court ruling that overturned Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, a remnant of British colonial rule that made homosexuality punishable by a prison term up to a life sentence. Some 15 petitioners oppose the ruling.

"Of the 15 petitioners opposing the order in the Supreme Court were BP Singhal, a senior VHP leader, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board, the Utkal Christian Council and the Apostolic Churches Alliance among others," reports Tehelka.

Other opponents of the gay rights decision include famous yoga expert Baba Ramdev, who claims that homosexuality can be "cured" through breathing exercises.

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