news

Indian churches to protest country's landmark ruling to decriminalise homosexuality

The country made the unanimous decision to overturn Section 377 of the Penal Code in September

2018-10-23

Words: Steve Brown

Churches in India are planning to protest the country’s landmark ruling to decriminalise homosexuality.

Back in 2013, homosexuality was reinstated as a criminal offence after four years of decriminalisation and was punishable by up to 10 years in jail.

However, in September this year, a five-judge bench in the country’s Supreme Court were unanimous in their decision to overturn the ban.

Chief of Justice of India, Dipak Misra, said at the time: “Any consensual sexual relationship between two consenting adults – homosexuals, heterosexuals or lesbians – cannot be said to be unconstitutional.”

LGBT activists around the world welcomed the decision including Meenakshi Ganguly, the director for Human Rights Watch in South Asia who wrote on Twitter: “Thanks to all that fought for this, braving the worst sort of prejudice.

“This is a good day for human rights.”

But now, in majority-Christian Nagaland, the Nagaland Baptist Church Council will meet at the end of October to “come up with a comprehensive document to discourage homosexuality”, the Times of India reported.

General secretary of NBCC Reverend Zelhou Keyho said: “Forming guidelines to uphold the teachings of the Bible is a moral imperative.

“Anything that goes against God’s design cannot be encouraged.”