“I’m happy and ‘gay’, now constitutionally also,” beamed Pooja Shrivastava, a resident of Ajnara-X in Crossings Republik (CR) reacting to the Supreme Court’s historic verdict today decriminalizing sex between two adults irrespective of their gender.
In a landmark judgement, the Apex Court scrapped Colonial-era Section 377 of Indian Penal code (IPC), which deemed gay sex as a punishable offence.
“It is historic! Now, I can think of marrying, legally,” said 42-year-old ex-journalist beaming with pride.
For long, homosexuality has remained a social taboo in the country and LGBTQ community have faced discrimination and unfair treatment. But the question is what and how much will the verdict change the way the community is treated in an urban city like Delhi-NCR.
Will the residents of modern high-rise apartments here welcome the LGBTQ community with open hearts and gates of their societies?
City Spidey reached out to the residents of Ghaziabad to find out.
Pooja has always been open about her sexual orientation. “I’m a very outspoken person and I’ve never hidden my sexual orientation with anyone,” she said.
Referring to the open discrimination of gays even in posh high-rises, she admitted she hasn’t faced much of it in her society. “The fact that I’m not shy of my sexual orientation deters people from gossiping about me. But had it been some other person, they would’ve discriminated on their faces,” she said.
“However, I’ve had my share of unfair treatment at the workplace,” she added.
Pooja believes that the order will definitely help LGBTQ community live a normal life. “For some, finding a rented accommodation becomes a huge task. At least it will give them strength to approach residential societies fearlessly,” she said.
Many times, the same sex couples portray themselves as friends and relatives fearing the backlash they might have to face. More than the act, the fear itself serves as discrimination, quipped Pooja.
She added that FedAOA must take a moral and social stand on behalf of AOAs. “AOAs should tell the residents that discrimination on the basis of one’s sexual orientation would not be tolerated in the society premises.”
FedAOA has released a circular welcoming the verdict and asked its member AOAs to fully cooperate. “We request every AOA to issue a circular in their respective societies supporting LGBTQ community,” the circular read.
Meanwhile the residents welcomed the judgement. Lipika Bhushan, a resident of ATS Advantage, Indirapuram, said that no one should interfere in the matter of personal choice and sexual orientation. “AOAs have no business asking about someone’s sexual orientation. It is a personal choice and should be respected by everyone,” she said.
Sanjay Jha, General Secretary of AOA, Gaur Global village in CR, said that if India wants to get into the league of developed nations, then such orthodox practices need to be abolished.
However, the verdict had a few disappointed faces too. Kishore Shukla, General Secretary of Exotica Eastern Courts in CR, called the rationale of aligning with developed nations hypocritical and a complete nonsense. “If that’s the case, why not abolish the reservation act and SC/ST atrocities act. Homosexuality is against the law of nature, science and Indian values,” said Shukla.
He also said that even after receiving legal validation, discrimination will not stop. “Majority of people will still object to it. If things keep going this way, the day is not far when SC will legalize drugs also, as it’s legalized in many developed nations,” he said.TAGS: Ajnara-X / Crossings Republik / Supreme Court’s verdict / decriminalizing gay sex / Section 377 / Indian Penal code (IPC) / Ghaziabad / ATS Advantage / FedAOA / Gaur Global village / Exotica Eastern Courts