- Homosexuality a socially immoral act, tweets Dattatreya Hosabale
- Gay marriage should be prohibited, says RSS leader Mr Hosabale
- Clarification after he was reported saying homosexuality not a crime
"Homosexuality is not a crime, but socially immoral act in our society. No need to punish, but to be treated as a psychological case," tweeted Mr Hosabale, RSS general secretary, in an apparent retreat after his comments - unusual for his organization - made headlines today.
Mr Hosabale also said that "gay marriage is Institutionalization of homosexuality. It should be prohibited."
The RSS is the ideological mentor of the ruling BJP and is known to influence many of its decisions though it insists that it is not a political organization.
Yesterday, replying to a question at the India Today conclave on whether homosexuality should remain a criminal offence, the RSS leader had said: "I don't think homosexuality should be considered a criminal offence as long as it does not affect the lives of others in society."
But he added that his organisation has no view on homosexuality as it is a personal choice.
"Sexual preferences are private and personal. Why should RSS express its views in a public forum? RSS has no view on that. It is for people to have their way. Personal preference of sex is not discussed in RSS and we don't even want to discuss that," he said.
Activists have challenged a Supreme Court ruling upholding the colonial-era Section 377 that says gay sex is a crime that can lead to 10 years in jail.
Political parties tread cautiously on the subject though individual politicians have supported the cause of gay rights activists.
Congress parliamentarian Shashi Tharoor last week failed to introduce a private member's bill to decriminalize homosexuality.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has backed calls for ending the ban on gay sex.