In a historic judgement, India’s Supreme Court struck down Section 377 which criminalised same-sex relationships. Here is what some Bollywood celebrities had to say about the verdict.
“What can I say? I am rendered speechless with joy. The tears can’t stop flowing. I am celebrating by cooking for my entire office. I am single so I don’t have anyone to celebrate this historic moment with. Loving someone is no longer an act of crime. I am no longer a criminal. My congratulations to all those vocal and fearless members of the LGBT community .Without their relentless fight this historic day wouldn’t have happened. In my own little way I’ve carried on my own fight against this dastardly discrimination. When I made My Brother Nikhil, I couldn’t show any intimacy between my two actors Purab Kohli and Sanjay Suri. This was in 2005. Now 13 years later when I showed intimacy in Shab I was rebuked by members of the censor board, ‘Yeh bache kaise dekhenge?’ It’s been a year since Shab was released in theatres. We still haven’t found any satellite channel that is willing to buy the film. Hopefully now gay filmmakers and films can find more acceptance. But this is a huge step ahead for the community. With the Government decriminalizing homosexuality discrimination for jobs and at work places will reduce considerably. Within our own entertainment industry there is so much homophobia that would now have to end. So many people who are afraid to come out in the fear of losing their reputation would now do so fearlessly. And I hope filmmakers other than me will make films about the community.”
“Hard to find words when the tears won’t stop. It’s been a life time of inequality and discrimination. Of being unfairly deemed a criminal. Of being the butt of many jokes. Of knowing that I can’t hold public office even if I want to. From today that will start to change. How long it will take? Will the road be easy? I have no idea. All I know is that nobody has the legal right to discriminate against me anymore. And for that I am grateful to all the rainbow warriors, starting with Ashok Row Kavi, the good people Humsafar & Naz, Anjali Gopalan, Anand Grover, Menaka Guruswami, all the petitioners, and every single LGBTQ person who lived their truth through years of darkness. So much gratitude also to the 5 justices who truly lived up to their tribes.
“Finally ! I haven’t read the report but this was long overdue. The concept of family is changing and decriminalizing 377 is a very important step towards recognizing that everyone has a right to family. What is “normal “ is culture-specific and there can’t be one monolithic standard that has sanctity above all else. My warmest regards to those who fought this inhuman section 377 and made the victory possible.”
“About time! Supreme Court restores my faith in our people yet again. Proud that my country believes in and upholds equality. Two consenting adults irrespective of sex, religion, cast and gender cannot be rendered criminals by the law. What an amazing day!”