Indian Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat on Thursday said that homosexuality would not be tolerated in the armed forces, according to NDTV.
He made the comment when asked his take on the Supreme Court decriminalising homosexuality last year.
“We will not allow this to happen in the army , in the army LGBT issues… are not unacceptable. We will still be dealing with them under various sections of the Army Act,” said General Rawat, addressing his annual press conference.
“We are not above the country’s law but when you join the Indian Army, some of the rights and privileges you enjoy are not what we have. Some things are different for us, but we are certainly not above the Supreme Court,” he said.
“We will have to see how we take a call, let us also see how it comes into the society, whether it’s accepted or not… I can’t say what will happen 20 years down the line.”
A five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court last September unanimously decriminalised a part of a colonial-era law under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which banned “consensual unnatural sex”, saying it violated the rights to equality.
Asked about the Supreme Court also ruling that adultery is not a crime, General Rawat said the Army is “very conservative”.
He added, “We are neither modernised, nor westernised.”
The army chief was asked these questions after a former general suggested in an article that the armed forces can continue to enforce their own rules on gay sex and adultery even after the Supreme Court orders.