New Delhi: The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community, commonly known as the LGBT has pinned their hopes on the Supreme Court’s verdict on Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code set to be declared on Tuesday.
The rainbow flagged pride is awaiting the decriminalisation of homosexuality after the Supreme Court put the ball in the Parliament’s court, saying it was for the legislature to take a call on the desirability of the controversial provision.
Section 377 of the IPC came into force in 1862 and defines unnatural offences. It says, “Whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to 10 years, and shall also be liable to fine.”
With India still reeling with the question of legalising same-sex marriage, here are the latest 10 countries that gave legal recognition to same-sex marriage or other types of partnerships:
1. United States: On June 26, 2003, sexual activity between consenting adults of the same sex as well as same-sex adolescents of a close age was declared legal nationwide.
It was on June 26, 2015, all states licensed and recognised marriage between same-sex couples on account of the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges.
2. Ireland: In May 2015, Ireland became the first country to legalise same-sex marriage on a national level by popular vote.
Both male and female same-sex sexual activity is legal in the state. Homosexuality was decriminalised in 1993, and most forms of discrimination based on sexual orientation are now outlawed. Same sex marriage still remains illegal in Northern Ireland.
3. Finland: A bill legalizing same-sex marriage in Finland was approved by the parliament on December 12, 2014 and signed by the President on February 20, 2015. Because other acts required follow-up changes, the law will not take effect until March 1, 2017.
4. Scotland: In 2015, Scotland was recognised as the “best country in Europe for LGBTI legal equality”. Same-sex marriage was approved by Scottish Parliament in February 2014 and received royal assent on 12 March 2014. It came into effect on 16 December 2014
5. Luxembourg: The parliament of Luxembourg passed a law enabling same sex marriage and adoption rights in June 2014 and took effect on 1 January 2015. The country has, however, been largely tolerant of LGBT rights.
6. France: France became the thirteenth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage in 2013, despite receiving opposition from across the country.
7. England/Wales: Same-sex marriage was legalised in England and Wales on the March 29, 2013 under the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013. Britain has, however, seen many highs and lows related to LGBT rights.
8. Brazil: On May 5, 2011, the Supreme Federal Court voted in favour of allowing same-sex couples the same 112 legal rights as married couples. Consequently, on May 14, 2013, The Justice’s National Council of Brazil legalised same-sex marriage in the entire country.
9. New Zealand: Same-sex marriage was legalised and went into effect on August 19, 2013.
10. Uruguay: LGBT rights in Uruguay are among the most liberal in South America. Same-sex sexual activity has been legal with an equal age of consent law since 1934. However, it was on August 5, 2013 that same-sex marriage became legal in Uruguay.