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Supreme Court begins hearing pleas challenging Section 377, says will examine if it violates right to freedom

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra on Tuesday began hearing legal arguments against Section 377.

india Updated: Jul 10, 2018 12:32 IST
Bhadra Sinha
Bhadra Sinha
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Section 377,Supreme Court,Gay sex
Section 377 of the penal code, bans gay acts and allows for jail terms of up to life, although prosecutions are rare.(Vijayanand Gupta/HT Photo)

The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it will examine the correctness of its 2013 verdict that upheld a law called Section 377 that criminalises consensual gay sex.

The court said it will examine if the fundamental right to life includes sexual freedom. “The principal question to be addressed is the correctness of the Koushal judgement. It affects the basic constitutional and human rights of a large section of society, called the sexual minority,” the court said about the 2013 verdict.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra on Tuesday began hearing legal arguments against Section 377. The bench will hear six petitions and interventions filed by NGO Naz Foundation, parents of queer persons and Voices Against 377, a collective of human rights groups, among others. In all, 35 individuals have come before the court, which signals a growing confidence in the community to come out in the public eye and claim their sexual orientation and gender identity.

First Published: Jul 10, 2018 12:32 IST