In a notable judgment seeking the rights of members of LGBTQIA+ community, the Madras High Court issued a number of guidelines ensuring that the community is not harassed by any police team in missing complaints which is put forward by their parents.
While taking into consideration a writ petition filed by two lesbians against police harassment, a single bench of Justice Anand Venkatesh put forward that a global change is needed in the approach towards LGBTQIA+ relationships. The hostilities they face are due to the fact that their relationship do not enjoy societal sanction. The Court observed that legislative changes are needed to exterminate against the discrimination faced by the LGBTQIA+ community and make sure the protection of their life and dignity. In this regard,the court mentioned how legislative intercessions are changing the attitude towards persons with disabilities and mental illness. The Court put forward the idea for similar legislative methods with respect to LGBTQIA+ community as well.
“Till the legislature comes up with an enactment, the LGBTQIA+ community cannot be left in a vulnerable atmosphere where there is no guarantee for their protection and safety. This gap is now sought to be filled in by way of issuing guidelines till law takes over and guarantees safety and protection”, the Court said while proceeding to issue certain guidelines.
Addressing the interim guidelines issued by the Court-
1. A.The police, on receipt of any complaint regarding girl/woman/man missing cases which upon enquiry/investigation is found to involve consenting adults belonging to the LGBTQIA+ community, shall upon receipt of their statements, close the complaint without subjecting them to any harassment.
2. Any person who faces any issue for the reason of their belongingness to the LGBTQIA+ community, could approach any of the enlisted NGOs for and protection of their rights.
3. The concerned NGO after consulting with the MSJE( Ministryof SocialJustice and Empowerment), shall maintain confidential records of such persons who engage in conversation with any of the enlisted NGOs and the exact data should be provided to the concerned Ministry.
The High Court held that the Supreme Court has legalized homosexuality between consenting adults by referring down the Section 377 of the IPC in the 2018 Navtej Singh Johar judgment. It saw that the Supreme Court has held discrimination against homosexauls for their sexual orientation as prejudice on the ground of ‘sex’ under Article 15 of the Indian Constitution.
All about the Case:
Title : S. Sushama andu another v Commissioner of Police and others.
Bench : Justice Anand Venkatesh
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