Indian Court Bans Conversion Therapy, Directs Reforms in LGBT Education

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On June 7th, the Madras High Court in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu banned any medical attempts to "cure" or change the sexual orientation of a person in a significant upholding of LGBTQIA+ rights in the state. The court has also announced directives to sensitize society and various branches of the state to remove prejudices against them. In addition, the court directed several reforms in educational institutions. Earlier this year, two young women, who fled their homes in Madurai and recently reached Chennai after their families opposed the relationship between them, were brought to court. In March 2021, the Madurai police allegedly harassed an LGBTQ+ activist and trans man for sheltering the lesbian couple. The court ordered counseling to the couple's parents after they sought protection following threats from their parents. Having undergone the "psycho-education" session, Justice Venkatesh said that he strongly feels that the change must occur at a societal level.

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