As a citizen of India, we have the fundamental right to constitutional remedy and the enforcement of fundamental rights that include right to equality, right to freedom, right against exploitation, right to freedom of religion, right to cultural and educational freedom.
Regardless of our sexual identities, we are also Indian citizens, with the full rights and privileges that incur. We are your daughters and sons, we are your friends and colleagues, and we are found in every part of the Indian society - from the smallest of villages to sprawling urban cities. We are also India.
As a co-founder of WHaQ (We Are Here and Queer) - LBT women in Bangalore, we are deeply saddened by the Indian Supreme Court Verdict today to set aside the Delhi High Court’s decision to decriminalise homosexual sex under IPC 377 in 2009.
To demean the entire the LGBT community and to mimimalise the LGBT identity into one penal code trivialises the identity of the community into a single sexual act.
But LGBT identity is not about sex. IT is about the right for us to exist. We are a large minority and we need to be accepted and acknowledged. In the end, all I would like to say is that the Section 377 of IPC is a hangover from the days of British Colonialism and that nation has clearly moved on.
For us, it’s a sad sad day.
Mari Eva Mendes, co-founder of WHaQ