Supreme Court on Section 377: LGBT individuals are forced to marry opposite sex

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Supreme Court on Section 377: LGBT individuals are forced to marry opposite sex

Justice Indu Malhotra today made an important observation during hearing on Section 377 in the Supreme Court when she said that LGBT individuals are forced to marry the opposite sex under family and social pressure.

In a significant observation during hearing on IPC Section 377, Justice Indu Malhotra today said that individuals belonging to LGBT (lesbian gay bisexual and transgender) community marry a person of the opposite sex and face "mental trauma". The observation came a day after the Supreme Court indicated that the right to choose a sexual partner is a fundamental right even if the right to sexual orientation is not a fundamental right.

One of the five judges on the Supreme Court constitution bench, Justice Malhotra said, "Because of family and societal pressures, they (LGBT community) are forced to marry the opposite sex and it leads to bi-sexuality and mental trauma," adding, "LGBT community feels inhibited to go for medical aid due to prejudices involved against them."

Justice Chandrachud also said that "there is deep rooted trauma involved in the society, which forces the LGBT community to be in fear."

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra and also comprising justices RF Nariman, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra is hearing a bunch of petitions that IPC Section 377 violates various fundamental rights under Articles 14, 15, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.

The petitioners have argued that consensual sexual relationships between same sex persons are protected under Articles 14, 19 and 21 and Section 377 is a violation of fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution.

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