NEW DELHI: Bollywood actor Ayushmann Khurrana in a recent interview had said that same-sex marriages had been legalised in India. People were quick to point out that the actor was wrong as the Supreme Court had decriminalized homosexuality between consenting adults by declaring Section 377, the penal provision which criminalized gay sex, as “manifestly arbitrary."
The actor took to Twitter to apologize.
" A genuine slip here though I really wish same-sex marriages get legal in India," he tweeted.
In September 2018, in separate but unanimous verdicts, a five-judge Constitution Bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice Rohinton Nariman, Justice A.M. Khanwilkar, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice Indu Malhotra partially struck down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) as unconstitutional.
The bench said it is no longer an offence for LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender/transsexual, intersex and queer/questioning) community to engage in consensual sex between two adults in private.
Reading out the judgment, Chief Justice Misra said attitudes and mentality have to change to accept others’ identity and accept what they are, and not what they should be.
“It is the constitutional and not social morality which will prevail,” said the court.
The verdict sparked celebrations in the LGBTIQ community across India even as the judgment was being read out. Many of the community members who had assembled outside the apex court jumped in joy and distributed sweets.
Actor Ayushmann Khurrana is playing a gay man on-screen in “Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan”
He had earlier said that many people from the industry told him to rethink playing a gay man on screen. “Their (family’s) confidence in me and my dreams has made me who I’m today, has made me what I stand for and I can’t thank them enough. Doing ‘Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan’ was one of the most important decisions of my life. A lot of people from the industry asked me to re-think this because no leading hero has ever portrayed a gay man on screen. But I knew, this stereotype needed to be shattered and the time to change it, is now. I somehow knew I had to do it and take the plunge,” he said.