Despite SC Ruling, India Abstains Again on Vote on LGBT Rights at UN

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07/13/2019

The Supreme Court may have decriminalised gay sex last year, but it seems the Indian government didn’t think that it was enough to revise a three-year-old position as it again abstained on the renewal of the mandate for an independent expert on protection for LGBT rights. At the Geneva-based 44-member UN human rights body, 27 countries voted in favour to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur (SR) for protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) for next three years on Friday. India joined Hungary, Burkina Faso, Angola, DRC, Senegal and Togo in abstaining from the vote. Twelve countries, including China and OIC member states, voted against the proposal for a second term for the independent expert. When the original resolution for creating a post for the independent expert was approved in June 2016, India had abstained from voting. India didn’t give any explanation for its stance at the chamber, but then MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup had responded by saying that New Delhi’s vote was dictated by the sub-judice nature of the case challenging the constitutional validity of Indian Penal Code’s Article 377.

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