Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI: The Centre on Monday concluded its submission on the petition for legalisation of homosexuality, saying that it was a disease and morally reprehensible.

Additional Solicitor-General P. P. Malhotra said homosexuality was a disease, and if it was legalised it would further accentuate AIDS in the country.

However, a Division Bench of the Court comprising Justice A. P. Shah and Justice S. Muralidhar objected to this submission observing that homosexuality might be a potent factor for spread of AIDS but it was not a disease.

The petitioner, Naaz Foundation, has already concluded its arguments submitting that continuation of the penal provision (Section 377) against homosexuality in the Indian Penal Code violates Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.

Seeking legalisation of homosexuality, it said that it would also help non-governmental organisation fight AIDS among gays.

Different stands

The Union Ministries of Home Affairs and Health and Family Welfare took different stands before the Court with the former opposing the petition while the latter supporting it.