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Country Overview

India

At a glance

Same-sex Relations for Men Legal Throughout the Country?

Yes

Same-sex Relations for Women Legal Throughout the Country?

Yes

Legal Gender Recognition Possible?

Yes

LGBTI Orgs Able to Register?

Yes

Actions Related to SOGI at the UN:

2016: Abstained from Voting IE SOGI

2019: Abstained from Voting IE SOGI

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India has made progress on LGBTIQ issues over the last decade; however, there are still barriers to full LGBTIQ equality. In 2018, the Indian Supreme Court struck down laws criminalizing same-sex relations. Tolerance and acceptance of LGBTIQ people as well as the visibility and prominence of LGBTIQ events has, as a result, improved, particularly in large cities. Despite these steps forward, much of India is conservative and same-sex attraction is largely seen as socially unacceptable for both men and women. Furthermore, there are great differences across different states of the country, depending on their cultural and religious contexts. In India, there are no protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, nor is there any legal recognition of same-sex couples. India’s domestic violence law only covers women victims of domestic violence. LGBTIQ people face discrimination, violence, and social rejection, particularly in rural and conservative Muslim areas. Transgender and intersex Indians have more legal protections than lesbian, gay, or bisexual Indians, but experience greater discrimination and stigmatization. Hijras are members of a community of intersex, transgender, and gender non-conforming people, who play a specific cultural role in India. Since 2014, India legally recognizes a “third gender” and parliament has passed several bills protecting Hijra, transgender, gender non-conforming, and intersex people from discrimination. However, this requires transgender people to register with the government. In spite of these legal protections, public attitudes are still largely negative.

Global Impact

Sub-Saharan Africa

Outright supports LGBTIQ organizations in Sub-Saharan Africa and works with mainstream human rights organizations to respect human rights and influence positive changes in laws, policies, attitudes, and beliefs that cause discrimination against LGBTIQ people on the continent.

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United Nations

Our work at the United Nations centers around advocating for the advancement of the rights of LGBTIQ people.

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Asia

Our work in Asia promotes acceptance of sexual and gender diversity at all levels of society.

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Middle East and North Africa

In the Middle East and North Africa, we partner with local groups in various countries as part of our international solidarity work. We also work with our local partners on different topics through capacity building, advocacy, research and holistic security.



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Europe and Central Asia

Outright International partners with activists to fight for an end to human rights violations based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression in Europe and Central Asia, where most of our work involves emergency responses to harassment, discrimination, violence and most recently, Russia’s brutal and expanded invasion of Ukraine.

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Americas

Our work in the Americas continues to build on the fundamental and positive transformation of human rights protections in recent years. We partner with groups in the Caribbean that focus on ending gender-based violence and eradicating discrimination against trans people.

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Pacific

Our work in the Pacific aims to increase visibility of activists, respond to human rights emergencies, and actively bridge local, regional and international activism to achieve equality and justice.

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Human Rights Research

Since 1990, we have partnered with activists from all over the world to produce hundreds of groundbreaking reports.

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