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Must read: Justice Leila Seth, mother to gay son, condemns Naz 377 reversal

Former Himachal Pradesh high court chief justice, Delhi high court justice and law commission member Leila Seth, who is also mother to a son who is homosexual, writes condemning the Supreme Court judgement re-criminalising homosexual intercourse in the Times of India.

The original Delhi high court judgment striking down section 377 was a “model of learning, humanity and application of Indian Constitutional principles . It was well crafted, and its reasoning clearly set out”, writes Seth. But when the Supreme Court overturned the lower court in December 2012, she was “extremely upset” because of her eldest son, and added:

A host of academics and lawyers have critiqued the judgment in great detail, including the non-addressal of the Article 15 argument, and have found it wanting in many respects. I do not intend to repeat those criticisms. However, I should point out that both learning and science get rather short shrift. Instead of welcoming cogent arguments from jurisprudence outside India, which is accepted practice in cases of fundamental rights, the judgment specifically dismisses them as being irrelevant. Further, rather than following medical, biological and psychological evidence , which show that homosexuality is a completely natural condition, part of a range not only of human sexuality but of the sexuality of almost every animal species we know, the judgment continues to talk in terms of 'unnatural' acts, even as it says that it would be difficult to list them.

But what has pained me and is more harmful is the spirit of the judgment. The interpretation of law is untempered by any sympathy for the suffering of others.

Read the full column at the TOI.

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