In a groundbreaking move, the Delhi High Court has ordered a shelter home to provide counselling to the parents and maternal uncle of a lesbian woman, aiming to prepare them to accept her lifestyle choices. The decision came during a habeas corpus petition filed by a friend of the woman, claiming she was missing.
The court, led by Justice Suresh Kumar Kait and Justice Neena Bansal Krishna, also directed the police to ensure the woman’s safe lodging at the shelter home. The woman herself refused to go with her parents, stating she would either stay with her friend who filed the petition or go to the shelter home.
The High Court’s directive extends to counselling sessions for the woman and her family on alternate days, emphasizing that no undue pressure or threats should be made against her. This ruling sets a significant precedent, not just for this particular case but potentially for the broader acceptance of LGBTQ+ individuals within their families.
The parents agreed to send their daughter to the shelter home for her to “reflect and introspect about her future,” marking a step towards potential reconciliation and understanding.
A Sign of Progress
The decision is a sign of progress in India’s attitude towards LGBTQ+ people. The country has come a long way in recent years, and this decision is a further step in the right direction. In 2009, the Delhi High Court struck down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalized same-sex sexual activity. In 2018, the Supreme Court of India upheld this decision, making it legal for same-sex couples to marry and adopt children.
Still More Work to Be Done
However, the decision is also a reminder that there is still more work to be done. Not everyone in India is accepting of LGBTQ+ people, and there is still a lot of discrimination and prejudice. According to a 2021 survey by the Human Rights Watch, 73% of LGBTQ+ Indians have experienced some form of discrimination in their lifetime.
The Counselling Sessions
The counselling sessions are a positive step. They can help the woman and her family to communicate and understand each other better. They can also help the family to come to terms with the woman’s sexuality. It is important for the counselling sessions to be sensitive and understanding, and to focus on building trust and communication between the woman and her family.
Hope for the Future
I hope that the counselling sessions are successful and that the woman is able to live her life freely and openly. I also hope that the decision of the Delhi High Court will inspire other families to accept their LGBTQ+ children.
The acceptance of LGBTQ+ people is a fundamental human right. It is important for everyone to be able to live their lives freely and openly, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The Delhi High Court’s decision is a step in the right direction, and I hope that it will lead to more acceptance of LGBTQ+ people in India and around the world.