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Indian Supreme court criticizes lawmakers’ comments over its re-banning gay sex

The Indian Supreme Court has refused to sack four Indian Government ministers for criticizing its recriminalization of homosexuality in the South Asian nation but has criticized them for criticizing it
Supreme Court Chief Justice P. Sathasivam
Photo by Nikhil Kanekal

The Indian Supreme Court has refused to sack four Indian Government lawmakers from their ministries for criticizing its decision to recriminalize homosexuality in India.

Delhi resident Purushotham Mulloli had petitioned the court for Law Minister Kapil Sibal, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram, Minister of State for Communications Milind Deora and Jammu and Kashmir state Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to be sacked as ministers for their public reactions to the court’s verdict - accusing them of showing contempt for the court.

Supreme Court Chief Justice P. Sathasivam did not remove the lawmakers from their positions but called their comments ‘unwarranted’ and cautioned them against making similar comments about the court and its judgements in future.

‘Remarks made against the verdict are not appreciable,’ Chief Justice Sathasivam wrote in his decision.

‘We agree that some of the statements made are not in good taste. They are holding high posts and have a responsibility. They must be cautious while making such comments.’

‘Though the statements made are not appreciable, we are not inclined to entertain the petition.’

Chidambaram had accused the Supreme Court justices who heard the case of taking India ‘back to 1860’ but Chief Justice Sathasivam said that his comments had not been very objectionable in comparison to the others.

The Indian Government is seeking a judicial review of the initial verdict reinstating the Section 377 sodomy law by two Supreme Court justices – one since retired – by a bench of five Supreme Court justices.

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