GB has been flooded with calls and emails from people asking about 
the Lucknow arrests and what the implications for the larger gay 
community could be. 

Specifically people want to know what sort of risk they would be 
running by having a profile up on, the site that seems 
to have lead to this, and on similar such sites. Some people are also 
panicking about being on the Net in any gay space whatsoever and 
about coming to gay events like GB parties. 

Its hard to give definite answers when everything is so unclear, but 
we should know more quite soon since a fact finding team of activists 
is now in Lucknow and will be meeting with the police and, hopefully, 
the detainees soon. Also, whatever one feels, panicking is never the 
best reaction. 

What one needs to do is to evaluate what little we know of this case, 
and from what we know from experience and proceed on that basis. Alok 
has done an excellent job of summarising the known facts of the case 
and its implications with regard section 377. I'll add some more 
philosophic comments in another, mail, but this is the mail to read 
for the basics: 

An update on the recent Lucknow Arrests.
Hi everyone,
Most of us have read the sensational newspaper reports of the "gang 
of 4" of homosexuals who have been arrested under S. 377 of the 
Indian Penal Code, "having unnatural sex" in the public parks of 
Lucknow, on the 3rd of Jan 2006. We have also read that these men met 
through a club set up by them on the internet, mainly via a website 
The press has, as always, sensationalised this story and blown it out 
of proportion. The mis-reporting is also largely due to the false 
statements made by the Police to hide their own flouting of police 
procedures and mis-application of S. 377 of the Indian Penal Code. 
The gay community has already helped in appointing lawyers for the 
people arrested and over 5 activists from across the country, have 
gone to Lucknow, to conduct a detailed fact finding, to determine 
what exactly took place, by checking the police records; speaking to 
the police involved, the people arrested and their families. 
So far the clear facts that have emerged are as follows:
One, Mr. N, a teacher, was caught by the Police (the exact nature of 
the arrest is unclear) on the night of the 2nd of Jan in Lucknow on 
allegations of S. 377. The allegations were based on the discovery by 
the Police of his cell number of on a profile on 
The Police engineered an entrapment and invited Mr. N to a Hotel, 
having entrapped him they took away his cell phone. They identified 
three numbers which were the most frequently dialled numbers from Mr 
N's phone and picked these three other people up subsequently and 
arrested all four under S. 377 of the Indian Penal Code.  
To the world at large the Police has announced that these four men 
were found having sex in the Park. However all the other information 
being gathered by members of the community and other activists 
clearly indicates that no sexual activity took place, nor was their 
any meeting in the park. The entire arrests have been based on the 
leads recieved by the Police by, possible harassing and blackmailing 
As far as the case under S. 377 is concerned, its a complete mis-
application of the law. S. 377 only makes THE ACTUAL ACT OF SODOMY 
(which could involve mutual masterbation, oral and anal sex) as 
punishable offences.  

a.) Being gay is NOT an offence under S. 377, but getting caught in 
the act of homosexual sex can be.

b.) Putting your name and profile on an internet profile, with benign 
messages like, looking for friendship, lover etc are defintely not 
punishable under S. 377.

c.) Putting your name and profile on an internet website, even if it 
mentions (explicity) that you are intested in homosexual sex, is 
arguably, not an offence.  

d.) If you have a profile on the the internet on a gay website, with 
your name and even your your pictures, there is NO REASON TO WORRY.

e.) However you may want to delete any nude/naked/sexually explicit 
pictures of yourself. 

f.) If your phone number is given with the profile, take it off, and 
just so you have peace of mind, change your cell no.   
Finally, what the Lucknow Police has done, is completely bad in law, 
and also mis-application of S. 377, and therefore the case against 
those 4 guys has no basis at all. On this point an application for 
Bail to release the 4 arrested will be made in the Sessions Court in 
Lucknow, in the course of the week. 

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