‘India’s Daughter’- Examining the Effectiveness of a Ban, or Lack Thereof

By Aishwarya Borgohain, University School of Law and Legal Studies, GGSIPU.

To forbid us anything is to make us have a mind for it.

– Michel de Montaigne

The release of the BBC documentary ‘India’s Daughter’ by filmmaker Leslee Udwin, and its consequent ban in India, has seen the launch of innumerable debates across social media. These debates are centered on the reasons for the ban, the efficacy and tenability of such a ban, as well as the nature of the documentary itself, and whether it may have – however inadvertently – done more harm than good. (more…)

Struggle for Dignity: The Voice of Queer Peripheral

By Ankit Sharma, Siddhartha Law College, Dehradun.

 “Why is it that, as a culture, we are more comfortable seeing two men holding guns than holding hands?”
                                                                                                                                             Ernest Gaines

Should the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender collectively known as ‘THE LGBT’ community in India continue to remain in the shadow of criminality? The de-criminalisation of homosexuality is now a myth. The Supreme Court of India has overturned a reading of Section 377 of Indian Penal Code and refused to review it or even to peruse it. Could this intolerance go so far as to allow for state tolerated slaughters against queer people? Or will it restrict itself to “merely” vigorously opposing the repeal of Section 377? Will this be going to Parliament to figure out the rights of LGBT community? Can’t Parliament take action? These are few questions which are yet to be answered. These questions reminds me the dilemma during the emergency when the SC fell in line in the Habeas Corpus case to hold that Indira Gandhi could even suspend the right to life, has it let down the cause of personal liberty as much as it has done in the Naz Foundation Case on 11.12.2013.[1] (more…)

Horrors of Rape Examination in India: The Controversial Two Finger Test

By Neelanjana Paul, KLE Society’s Law College, Bangalore.

A lot of things can be done with two fingers. Eat, Whistle, Write, even the sign for Victory.  But what definitely should not be done is to test someone for rape. For a rape survivor, it is a never ending nightmare which entails as the investigation is carried on. What mostly instils fear in the minds of the survivors is the controversial two-finger test. After years of protests from social activists and survivors’ groups, the government has finally put together a new series of guidelines for how to treat Indian rape survivors. In particular, the guidelines address the controversial Two-finger Test (TFT), a commonly-used procedure that survivors have described as incredibly traumatic, and critics have decried for being unscientific. (more…)

Women in Rural India: Prospects and Challenges

By Deepali Bagla, Pravin Gandhi College of Law, Mumbai.

India is a country of villages as the majority of its population lives in villages and far-flung remote areas. The interesting aspect is that every region of the country though connected with the cities now; however, still possesses its own peculiar traditional ethos. Also most of the rural communities are still devoid of modern facilities like education, electricity, proper drinking water, health care, ample transportation, etc. But the lack of education in many of the rural belts of India is proving fatal and acting as the breeding ground for social vices, evils and paving the way to anti-social/national activities. (more…)

NALSA v UoI: Critical Analysis

The Supreme Court of India passed a landmark judgment on Transgender rights in April, this year. The Judgment was a long due acknowledgment of the rights of the Transgender in the nation. This judgment plays an essential role in the furtherance of the cause of Transgender and will help in removal of the stigma attached to the third gender and lead to greater social acceptance.

The Judgments applicability was restricted by the Court only to “Transgender”, and explicitly excluded the Lesbians, Gays and Bisexual, thereby not going in the controversial question of validity of Section 377 of Indian Penal Code. With regard to Transgender, both the people who want to transition from their respective genders and the ones who want to be identified with the third gender were included within the ambit of the judgment. (more…)

Uniform Civil Code: Towards Gender Justice

By Dishari Chakrabarti, School of Law, KIIT University.

Politics of our nation has become so ingrained in pacification with specific sections of the society that our fundamental right of free speech and expression cannot be protected by the State. As a consequence of this appeasement the level of tolerance has reduced and which resulted in complete disregard for the law of the country. (more…)

LGBT Rights in India

By Nikhil Nair, VIPS, New Delhi.

LGBT is a common term used to describe people who are Lesbians, Gay, Bisexuals and Transgender. The ambit of LGBT also sometimes widens up to include non-heterosexuals. A large population in India is homophobic. Being a part of the LGBT community is considered to be a sin for them. People belonging to such communities are considered as outcastes and outlaws by some. This majorly has to do with the mindset of the majority Indian population who consider sexual activities within the same sex as against the law of nature. (more…)