- Michael said he was molested by a taxi driver and two others in 2004
- He was also molested by a relative, a neighbour and his father's friend
- Michael's father did not approach the police after all these incidents
After the Supreme Court overruled its own 2013 decision and partially struck down Section 377, a controversial British-era law that banned consensual gay sex, members of the LGBT community shared stories kept hidden in their hurt locker for years.
Delhi-based fashion designer Michael has lived with shame and fear since his teenage years. Michael said, in 2004, when he was a young boy, he was molested by a taxi driver and two others. Shaken, Michael's first instinct was to go to his father. "The child was hospitalised for 22 months. But the dad did not have the courage to go to the police and complain," he said on NDTV, narrating his story in third person.
Michael said he was molested by a close relative, a neighbour and his father's friend in the following years. But he kept quiet about it.
In 2013, when the Supreme Court cancelled the Delhi high court order and restored the ban on homosexuality, Michael mustered the courage to go up to his father and question why he did not fight for his son and approach the police. His father told him, "Now you're legal. Now we can complain." Michael said, "Was I not your son? Why couldn't you?"
Michael's story of being an outsider in his own home didn't end there. "My stepmother kicked me out of the house because she was afraid I would molest my younger brother," he said.
On Thursday, Michael got a call from his father. "Congratulations, beta. You're legal now," the voice at the other end said. "That made me happy. That made me sad. That made me confused," Michael said.
Ali, another young man narrated the ordeal his partner had to go through after he was gang-raped in central Delhi four years ago because he couldn't go to the police for fear of being made fun of. "It took him months to recover from the trauma. He could not go to the police because of the fear that if he went to the police, they would turn the tables on him," Ali told NDTV. "I am sure had Section 377 not been there probably he could have had justice," he said, holding back his tears.
On Thursday, India joined 125 other countries where homosexuality is legal after the Supreme Court unanimously decriminalised part of the 158-year-old law, saying it violated the rights to equality.