The questioning of one’s gender, sexual identity, sexual orientation, or all three is a process of exploration by people who may be unsure, still exploring, and concerned about applying a social label to themselves for various reasons.
The use of Q in the acronym LGBT stands for queer and questioning.
People often use LGBTQ+ to mean all of the communities included in the “LGBTTTQQIAA”:
Situation of LGBT community in India
The people who belong to LGBT community face social and legal problems that are not faced by the other community. Although for the protection of this community, anti discimination laws are not yet provided but the nation has repealed laws followed from the british India which were directly against the community.
Discrimination and violation of the human rights of LGBT people have antagonistic ramifications on their capacity to add to improvement and to profit by it. Stigma and discrimination often leave LGBT persons in a situation of poverty and render them vulnerable to violence and HIV/Aids. Living openly, or even just being perceived as, or associated with, an LGBT person, many times means risk of losing one’s employment, housing, education, and access to health care. LGBT persons must be recognized as rights-bearers and agents that have an indisputable right to participate in processes and decisions that affect their lives and society at large. The discrimination arises in various fields in employment and in young age they are eliminated from the education opportunity they also lack from family support. These people often suffered from harassment because of their sexuality and gender expression.
Article 377 of the Indian penal codewas found to be irrational in some aspects and was challenged by NAZ Foundation in the high court by filing a Public Interest Litigation
The NAZ Foundation had been fighting for the recognition of same gender intercourse as legal and acceptable in society since 2001. They had faced many obstructions in their path to victory and various criticisms from all over the nation. It took the judiciary 17 years to decriminalize homosexuality or get justice to people who were once denied to their basic fundamental rights including Article 14, 15 and 21 of the Indian constitution.
The supreme court of India also found that people belonging to the LGBT community have long awaited their freedom to choose, which they have been for over 150 years denied of. Various criticisms were faced by these people from the society and after a point of time when this issue was raised in the parliament; this issue was given a shape of political agenda where the ruling and the opposition parties were fighting more in order to secure their own personal interests.
The NAZ Foundation first filed a PIL in 2001 which led to decriminalization of gay sex in 2009 by the high court. But again in 2013 this section was decriminalized by a two judge bench of the supreme court of India saying that it was for Parliament to take action upon the case instead of any courts.
Again on 14th august 2017 a constitution bench of Supreme Court said that section 377 of the Indian penal code violates various fundamental rights of the people belonging to the LGBT community such as art 14, 15 and 21. It also said that privacy is a fundamental right that shouldn’t be denied to anyone. But still in 2017 the Supreme Court could not decriminalize section 377 because no review petition was filed by anyone. In 2018, five lawyers – Navtej Jauhar, journalist Sunil Mehra, Chef Ritu Dalmia, hoteliers Aman Nath and Keshav Puri filled a PIL in the Supreme Court demanding decriminalization of section 377 of the indian penal code. A 5 judge bench was set up in the Supreme Court with chief justice of india – justice Dipak Misra who passed the judgement which decriminalizes gay sex in India.
The judgement passed by the supreme court on 6th September 2018 modified section 377 of IPC saying that only consensual gay sex has been decriminalized and intercourse with minors and animals are still considered a crime which is punishable under this section of the Indian penal code.
Decriminalization of section 377 draws a new era where people belonging to the LGBT community can now live a single life and they do not need to show people that they are heterosexual while they are homosexual. These people have been long denied their fundamental rights; they have been beaten, criticized and discriminated against by society.
There was a failure in the judicial system as well because the courts actually took a very long time to provide justice in this case while the people belonging to the LGBT community were continuously facing denial of their fundamental rights and criticism from various groups of people all over the nation. Thus both, the society and the judiciary, owes a great apology to these people who faced injustice for almost 150 years.
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