9th March, 2014: GayBombay’s Special Sunday Workshop : IPC 377 Living with the Law

GayBombay’s Special Sunday Workshop : IPC 377 Living with the Law

Day, Date & Time:
Sunday 9 March 2014
Between 4:00 to 7:00 pm

Hotel Imperial Palace,
Telly Park Lane (Tailli Galli),
Andheri (East)


When the law is against you what can you do?
– You can leave for another country where the laws are better.
– You can go back in the closet and try to lead a straight life.
– Or you can do what many people did all those years before the Delhi High Court gave us freedom, and that is find ways to lead our lives within the law, yet still (more or less) on our own terms.

The Supreme Court decision in December has been a huge setback for the LGBT community in India. Our lawyers are still trying to find every possible means to turn back or mitigate the verdict, and we have also been greatly helped by huge amount of public support we got after the SC verdict.

In the end we are confident the law will come back in our favour, but we must be ready for it take years. And till then we have to learn to live with the law as it is.

We don’t want to leave India, for we have so many reasons to stay here, not linked to the law.

And we don’t want to go back, or stay in the closet, because in the four years of freedom we enjoyed, we realised we couldn’t keep such a basic part of ourselves as our sexuality always under wraps.

This is about the simple things of life. Living quietly with your partner in a flat of your own. Studying in college where you can talk to your friends about your boyfriend and not fear being bullied. Working where you don’t have to pretend to co-workers that you have an opposite sex partner somewhere or where you are free to focus on doing your work to the best of your abilities and not fear how your career might be affected by a homophobic boss. Meeting someone you like and going home with him without fear of blackmail. Being a full and involved part of your family without having to deal with constant pressure to get married.

None of this affects other people and none of it should attract the attention of the law, but after the SC verdict no one is sure. If you are blackmailed does the law protect you – or is it on the side of the blackmailer? If you have to make a police complaint, will it go against you because you are gay? If you are facing a family property dispute, can the opposing members threaten to use your sexuality against you? Can someone in office screw your promotion by alleging you sexually harassed him?

GB’s Workshop on Living with Law helps you answer some of these questions. With the help of Vijay Hiremath, a lawyer with a wide range of experience in helping LGBT people deal in a range of legal situations, we’ll be looking at all the issues we might face now that the basic law is against us. This is not primarily going to be a meeting on the Section 377 case (though we can answer questions on that) but on all the other issues we will have to face as we wait for the law to come back on our side.

GB and Vijay have often got urgent calls for help from people who are in crisis situations over some legal issue. We always try and help as best as we can, but one thing we’ve learned is that often some knowledge of the law might have prevented people getting into that problem in the first place – and once they are in the problem, getting out is not easy. So do your best to avoid getting into problems by coming for this workshop and finding out how to live with the law, even if the law doesn’t want to live with us!

Note: GB strongly recommends you come to the meet to share your views and interact directly with our speaker and others. But if you can’t, but have a query, please mail them to us at vikdoc@gmail.com and we’ll try and find and answer and send it back to you.

Hotel Imperial Palace is a 5 minute walk from Andheri station on the East side. Walk up the Andheri Kurla Road (towards the Highway) and turn right into Telli Galli. It s the 3rd building on your right.

Note :
1. Do get your friends along to help them gain access to a group especially if they are not netizens.

2. You do not have to be “out” to the world to attend. This is a discreet event being held as a clean, safe & social get-together of a non-sexual nature. Hardly any of those attending are “out” as such.

3. You need to be at least 18 years of age to attend.

4. There may be many who will prefer being discreet or may be still be coming to terms with themselves hence a request that all be sensitive to this and act and dress accordingly.