Aditya Bondyopadhyay posted this news item on the GB forum with a “OMG and OMG Again.!!” and I totally agree. This is a major step forward for a government in India and I can’t help be start to review my thoughts about how progressive the United Progressive Alliance actually is turning out to be.
Thank You UPA! Thank you Congress!
Read the Indian Express article here
In Cabinet: Rs 55-cr campaign to counter stigma against gays
New Delhi: The Union Cabinet could take a decision on Thursday on the Centre’s stand on the July 2 judgment of the Delhi High Court striking down provisions in Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that criminalized same-gender, consensual sex.
Simultaneously, the Cabinet is likely to give a go-ahead to the Union Health Ministry’s proposal to launch a Rs 55-crore campaign to “destigmatise gay and lesbian relationships” and launch an awareness campaign on the issue. The campaign would be part of the Ministry’s plan to remove myths and counter negative stereotypes about gays.
While both the issues are part of the agenda for the Cabinet meeting, which was circulated today, sources said it was uncertain if the Cabinet would take up the Section 377 matter in the absence of Home Minister P Chidambaram, who is away to the US on an official visit.
“The Home Ministry proposal seeking the Cabinet’s approval to its decision not to contest the Delhi High Court judgment is part of the agenda. But with the Home Minister not there, it will be left to Law Minister M Veerappa Moily and health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad to inform their Cabinet colleagues about the rationale behind the MHA decision,” said a senior official.
The MHA is seeking the Cabinet’s nod to leave it to the Supreme Court to decide the issue of legality or otherwise of the High Court judgment.
As already reported, the MHA decision to not question the HC judgment stems from the fact that experts, including Union Law Secretary T K Vishwanathan, have said that it’s difficult to find any lacunae in the judgment and that there were no sufficient grounds for an appeal.
On August 17, the Supreme Court had sought a response from the Centre on petitions filed by a Christian body and a disciple of Yoga guru Ramdev seeking a stay on the Delhi High Court verdict. The next hearing is on September 14.