“Decriminalising of homosexuality destroyed the culture and tradition of the country”

The decriminalising of homosexuality in India came under sharp criticism from Lalu Prasad, Rashtriya Janata Dal leader, who said such things “destroyed the culture and tradition” of the country.

“India is being disrobed by the western culture and the government is being a mute spectator to all this. It did not even challenge the Delhi High Court order that scrapped Article 377 of the IPC that criminalised gay sex by saying it was violative of individual rights. “Out of shame we are not even talking about it,” he said during a Zero Hour mention in the Lok Sabha on Thursday.

Though the Zero Hour mention was on the economic crisis in the United States and Europe, besides the unprecedented riots in Britain — a matter raised by Murli Manohar Joshi of the Bharatiya Janata Party — Mr. Prasad said it was not only the western economic policies, but also the culture that were adversely impacting the country.

Referring to the recent ‘Slut Walk' held in the Capital, Mr. Prasad said we had naked women walking down the streets with tattoos on their cheeks, whereas Indian women did not even look up while walking. “Women marrying women and men marrying men. Where is this country of saints and sages headed for,” he sought to know.

Strongly disapproving of Valentine's Day celebrations, chatting, facebook, and the use of Internet, Mr. Prasad said India was blindly adopting western culture. Trying to explain the sculptures of Khajuraho and other ancient Indian temples depicting sexuality, Mr. Prasad said those were meant to revive the interest of people in sex.

He said the riots in the U.K. were not about the rich and the poor but about cultural mismatch.

Several members, cutting across party lines, found logic in Mr. Prasad's observations.

Mr. Joshi said the developments in the U.S. economy as also the problems being faced by the European Union would have their impact all over the world.

He said this could culminate in problems for Indian IT companies there as also pose problems for the Indians there following demands that those who were not American or British should be sent back.

Mr. Joshi said a large stock of dollars was being kept by India in the U.S. treasury; the developments in that country also posed problems for China.

In view of the serious economic situation, Mr. Joshi said, the prices of gold and silver had shot up in an unprecedented manner. He said there should be a thorough discussion on the issue.

Mr. Joshi was supported by JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav, CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta, Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh, RJD president Lalu Prasad and the BSP's Vijay Bahadur Singh who warned against blindly aping the U.S. and West.

Mr. Sharad Yadav said the unrest in the U.K. was the outcome of declining moral values. “The British Parliament is now meeting to understand the reason behind the violence and we are adopting the same values in India.”

Mr. Mulayam Singh describing the situation in the U.S. as “serious,” said lakhs of Indians were fleeing that country and wanted to know what the government was doing or planning to do.

Mr. Dasgupta said all members were unanimous in emphasising that the country should not follow the U.S. model, else India might also face similar problems. He said the country was sitting on a volcano.

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