Indian MP to continue efforts to decriminalize homosexuality

Indian MP Shashi Tharoor, a member of the opposition Congress party, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an interview that he will continue to push for the decriminalization of homosexual acts in India.

Tharoor, who served as a minister under the previous government, introduced a private member’s bill in December that was aimed at amending Section 377, a colonial-era law that is interpreted as banning sex acts between members of the same sex. In an unusual move, parliamentarians from the governing BJP killed the bill before it could be discussed by the full parliament.  A senior leader in the BJP, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, however recently made news for publicizing his opposition to Section 377.

Tharoor told Reuters, “I think a debate will actually sensitise the nation to the issue at stake. I have long argued that this is not about sex but about freedom. It’s about our constitutional values.”  He continued, “it is indeed about getting the government out of people’s bedrooms.”

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