Hello, I am Aathira and am a lawyer by profession. I would like to share my two cents on the importance of knowing your rights as a member of the LGBTQI community in India.
India is a country that is home to more than 1.4 billion people, people from various ethnicities, religions, genders live together. The constitution that governs our very being lays down that every Indian citizen shall be treated with equality and shall have the liberty of thought and expression, belief, faith among others.
Contrary to the the preamble, until recent times the Indian constitution, the legal and administrative structure did not recognise the rights of the LGBTQ community (i.e short for Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex – not being the exhaustive definition for the same).
Not only was the LGBTQI community not recognised by the society they were marginalised, socially isolated, discriminated against and were also denied basic human rights as the citizen of this country. They have been stigmatised as a community and still are by the majority of the population. However, over the recent years, the belligerent LGBTQI community have strived to make an impact on the legal construction of India and have been successful in creating awareness about the rights and recognition they are entitled to.
In a country where a substantial number of the population identify themselves as part of the LGBTQI community, are still unaware of the rights they have in India.
Following are a few points you must know as a citizen of India:
- The Supreme court of India in 2014, recognised a third gender – Transgender (hijras, transgender people, eunuchs, and intersex people). They have finally been granted the rights available to every citizen in India, and has recognised them as a minority giving them an equal and fair opportunity to grow. They are also entitled to quotas in jobs and education.
- In 2019, The supreme court of India decriminalised section 377, making it legal for two consenting same sex adults to indulge in sexual intercourse and being in a relationship.
- Same sex couples can legally live in together and have the same rights as heterosexual couples in an unregistered cohabitation. Homosexual consenting live in relationships are protected by law.
- As per the basic human rights that every citizen of the country is entitles to, no person can be discriminated on the basis of their sexual orientation. They are to be treated as every citizen of the country.
Aathira Satish is a lawyer by profession with a passion for health. She is the legal head at RachnaRestores™️.
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