New Delhi: In a landmark judgement, the Supreme Court on Thursday decriminalised part of the 158-year-old colonial law under Section 377 of the IPC which criminalises consensual unnatural sex.
Cinema is a medium has time and again touched upon the subject of homosexuality be it in the West or Hindi film industry. Today as the country hails this historic judgement, let’s take a look at some of the Bollywood movies which dealt with homosexuality as a subject:
This 1996 Indo-Canadian film starring veteran actress Shabana Azmi and Nandita Sen had created a flutter back in those days. Directed by Deepa Mehta, the movie was loosely based on Ismat Chughtai’s 1942 story, Lihaaf (The Quilt). Amid protests, ‘Fire’ released in India in 1998.
This 2016 biopic starring classic actor Manoj Bajpayee in the titular role of a professor received a positive response from the audiences. It was directed by Hansal Mehta and written by Apurva Asrani.
Margarita With A Straw
Kalki Koechlin’s path-breaking act in Shonali Bose’s directorial venture presented her in a role of a girl suffering from cerebral palsy. The 2014 drama shows how Kalki has a complex relationship with a blind girl played by Sayani Gupta. The film got a thunderous response from the viewers.
Onir’s 2011 drama presented four stories namely—Omar, Afia, Abhimanyu, and Megha. Each film shares the common theme of fear, and each film is based on real-life stories. One of the themes happened to be on gay rights.
Kapoor & Sons
Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions’ much-loved venture ‘Kapoor & Sons’ had touched upon homosexuality where one of the sons played by Pakistani actor Fawad Khan was gay. It was directed by Shakun Batra. The film was written by Shakun Batra and Ayesha Devitre Dhillon.
This 2013 venture consisted of four short films which were helmed by directors like Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee, Zoya Akhtar and Karan Johar. The one directed by KJo was titled ‘Ajeeb Dastaan Hai Yeh’ and presented the story where Randeep Hooda and Saqib Saleem played lovers. It showed that despite getting married to someone of the opposite sex, their feelings remained undeterred.
There are many other cinematic gems which presented the subject of homosexuality and the hardships people face in day-to-day life.
According to PTI, a five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra termed the part of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code which criminalises unnatural sex as irrational, indefensible and manifestly arbitrary.
The bench, which also comprised Justices R F Nariman, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra, struck down Section 377 as being violative of right to equality. The top court, in four separate but concurring judgements, set aside its own verdict in the Suresh Kaushal case.