Allahabad High court has recently directed the reinstatement of a home guard who was fired because of his sexual orientation. He was suspended on the charge of “indecency” on the basis of a video in which he was allegedly seen “showing affection” to his same-sex partner. The court upheld the person’s individual choice and freedom in its order.
The order was passed by justice Sunita Agarwal on February 2 but made public on Tuesday. It came on a dismissal order passed by the Bulandshahr district commandant of home guards on June 11, 2019, firing the petitioner, Pramod Kumar Sharma, from his position as a home guard.
The order was passed by justice Sunita Agarwal on February 2 and was made public on Tuesday.
HC ruled the firing of the Home guard on the basis of his sexual orientation is a violation of the Supreme Court’s landmark 2018 verdict in Navtej Johar vs Union of India that decriminalised homosexuality and upheld the rights of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) community. “It was held that any display of affection amongst the members of the LGBT community towards their partners in the public, so long as it does not amount to indecency or has the potentiality to disturb public order, cannot be bogged down by majority perception,” the court order read.
“From the reading of the [dismissal] order itself, it is found to be vindictive in nature,” the order said.
Sharma’s lawyers hailed the order. “We were able to argue that the man was dismissed from his job with no opportunity to make his case, investigation, or inquiry committee,” said Awadesh Kumar Malviya, who represented Sharma.