Saturday, September 23, 2006

SASOD is encouraged by Open Letter from Indian citizens

THE support for the equality of gay and lesbian
citizens around the world was strengthened with the
issuing of an Open Letter to the Government of India
by more than 100 eminent persons of Indian origin

The letter was written by noted author, and endorsed
by Nobel Prize economist Amartya Sen. The other
signatories come from diverse walks of life, and
include academics, public servants, politicians,
lawyers, artists, soldiers, religious leaders, social
activists and business people. Some of them were
active in the fight for India's independence.

The purpose of the letter was to call for a repeal of
the colonial 'sodomy' laws which the authors believe
are held to oppress homosexual men. They join the list
of notable world citizens like

Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama, who
themselves survivors of oppression, have condemned the
oppression of gay and lesbian people.

The Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination
welcomes the move by the Indian citizens to call for a
review of the legislation which criminalises
consensual same sex relationships.

Guyana, like India, inherited some of the oppressions
inherent in the colonial laws which have been repealed
in the United Kingdom and in other parts of the

SASOD calls for a reform of the various legislation
which deals with sexual offences, to remove the ban on
consensual sex. At the same time SASOD has joined with
other interest group to call for the urgent reform of
the legislation to improve the access to justice for
victims of sexual violence, especially child victims.

The signatories to that letter asserted that "There
should be no discrimination in India on the grounds of
sexual orientation. In the name of humanity and our
Constitution this cruel and discriminatory law should
be struck down."

Those who are interested in a progressive and
inclusive democracy in Guyana should also work towards
the removal of discrimination against gay and lesbian

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