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Meet The Petitioners Who Challenged Criminalisation Of Homosexuality

The Supreme Court unanimously decriminalised part of the 158-year-old colonial law under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code which criminalises homosexuality

Meet The Petitioners Who Challenged Criminalisation Of Homosexuality
Meet The Petitioners Who Challenged Criminalisation Of Homosexuality
outlookindia.com
2018-09-12T16:45:55+0530

In a landmark verdict, a five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court Thursday unanimously decriminalised part of the 158-year-old colonial law under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code which criminalises homosexuality.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra termed the part of Section 377 of the IPC which crimiminalises unnatural sex as irrational, indefensible and manifestly arbitrary.

Here are the prominent celebrity petitioners who challenged ban on homosexuality.

Ritu Dalmia: A Delhi-based chef and owner of restaurant chain ‘Diva’, she identifies herself as a lesbian. She filed the petition after the Supreme Court reversed the Delhi high court judement on Section 377. She believes that life doesn’t change whether you are gay or straight. 

Navtej Johar: An Indian classical dancer and winner of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, Navtej Johar is also a choreographer and yoga instructor. He and his partner had petitioned the Supreme Court to decriminalise consensual gay sex. Johar believes that his orientation is different and it is not a crime.

Sunil Mehra: A former journalist, Sunil Mehra was the editor of the Indian edition of Maxim magazine. He co-founded the yoga and well-being centre ‘Studio Abhyas’ with his partner over two decades Navtej Singh Johar.

Aman Nath: He is a historian, hotelier and warrior of gay rights. He is one of the founding members of the Indian International Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH). The acclaimed historian, along with his partner of 23 years Francis Wacziarg, established the acclaimed chain of Neemrana hotels which restores preserves and runs hotels at historical sites. He along with his partner was awarded a lifetime achievement award by the Ministry of Tourism in 2014.

Ayesha Kapur:  Ayesha Kapur is a business executive who currently works in the food and beverages industry in Delhi. She earned a double major from Clark University in Massachusetts, and returned to India in 1998 and started  her career in the e-commerce sector. According to the petition, in 2008, Kapur "had no option but to quit a lucrative business career due to the fear of her sexual orientation being discovered". In the petition, she also describes how she was "unable to accompany or be accompanied by her committed partner at social and family occasions"

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