The gay community has asked for the sacking of Additional Solicitor General (ASG), PP Malhotra after his Supreme Court statement calling gay sex “highly immoral and against social order”. On Thursday, Malhotra, claiming to be appearing for the home ministry, made the statement to the court against decriminalising homosexuality.
Shortly after his statement, the home ministry distanced itself from the statement, saying it had not taken any stand on the Delhi High Court order decriminalizing homosexuality.
Members of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) community and supporters say that they are deeply hurt by what Malhotra said.
“It’s bigotry. The ASG, who made such provocative comments against the sexual minorities in the Supreme Court must be sacked,” says advertising guru Prahlad Kakkar.
Gay rights activists say the ministry’s face-saving statement will not undo the damage. “The ASG’s statement was unconstitutional. He vented his hatred in front of the Supreme Court, misusing his position. This is reason enough for him to be removed from the post,” says, Rudrani Chattri of Mitra Trust, an LGBT organisation.
“The ASG must be asked to leave his post for his illogical statements,” says Maria Mehra, a vocal member of the LGBT community. Jatin Kumar of a city-based LGBT organisation, DDART, agrees. “He must be removed from the important position that he holds.” Actor Gul Panag says, “Sexuality is about individual freedom and the state cannot trample on it. It’s good that the ministry has realised that it cannot have a stand on someone’s sexuality,” she says.
However, the community says it has full faith in the Supreme Court and is hopeful that its rights will be guarded by the apex court.
Meanwhile, Twitter was also abuzz with angry comments about the issue. “People like PP Malhotra are confused about morality and should be sacked. They are incompetent and love to discriminate,” wrote @GA77. “With his remarks, Additional solicitor general P PMalhotra has shown that he is unworthy of his post. He should resign,” wrote another user @WonderfulMumbai.
IN THE COURTS
In July 2009, the Delhi High Court decriminalised gay sex throughout India, where Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code was adjudged to violate the fundamental right to equality.
Several anti-gay groups have filed petition in the Supreme Court, opposing the High Court verdict.
Did the ASG misuse his position by venting out his bias against homosexuality?
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