We are now past the 1 year anniversary of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code being decriminalised by the Supreme Court. Years of oppression, misconception and persecution ended September 6th, last year.
Although India still has a long way to go in all matters of inclusion, this was a big step towards the cause. For those of you who need a refresher, the Supreme Court ruling stated that consensual sexual acts between two adults cannot be a crime (and rightly so), which basically made the previous law stating that it was punishable by the law obsolete. The previous law violated basic human rights, and has been doing so for a very long time, despite ratifying the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights in the United Nations.
The ruling, however, was no easy feat and everyone in the community knows that it was a collective effort between the community and judiciary as it was a tug-of-war between both parties and the parliament to scrap the outdated law. Nevertheless, all efforts were proven fruitful and now every Indian citizen can now be themselves wholeheartedly without discrimination from the law.
One year later, and I see a big difference in the Indian society today. Acceptance more often than not is disregarded, and we seek it more than we’d like to admit. It is definitely a privilege that we have earned, though a little late, it is highly appreciated. With this opportunity, I am able to do what I do today with pride. From my corporate inclusion efforts to my gender fluid fashion label, it is the acceptance that September 6th had provided me that keeps me going.
The LGBTQ community has moved forward leaps and bounds today, and I do hope we continue moving towards a more progressive and inclusive nation. Divided we fall, together we stand tall. Happy September 6th everyone!