The Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved verdict on a batch of appeals challenging the Delhi High Court judgment decriminalising sex between two consenting adults (Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code).
A Bench of Justices G.S. Singhvi and S.J. Mukhopadhaya heard marathon arguments from February 15 from counsel for the appellants, Attorney-General G. E. Vahanvati and others arguing for and against the judgment.
After an initial flip-flop by the Centre in opposing the judgment and changing its stand later, the Attorney General said it decided not to file any appeal against the verdict. He said Section 377 of the IPC “insofar as it criminalises consensual sexual acts of adults in private [before it was struck down by the High Court] was imposed upon Indian society due to the moral views of the British rulers.”
Parents of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders told the court that the High Court judgment should not be interfered with. It was argued on their behalf that Section 377 of the IPC created a sense of fear among them and it was against their right to life and liberty guaranteed under the Constitution.
The Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights, the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board and the Apostolic Churches Alliance strongly opposed the judgment.