Achyuth B. Nandan, School of Legal studies, Cochin University of Science and Technology Kalamassery, Kochi, Kerala
The Rights and freedom of the sexual minorities, that is the LGBT community can be viewed within the larger perspective of human rights. Human rights are nothing but, rights which has been conferred by birth available to all individuals irrespective of their caste, creed, religion, nationality and most importantly gender and sexual orientation. Human rights are possessed by all human beings simply due to the very fact that they are human beings. Hence these rights are fundamental and inalienable in nature which are essential for life as human beings irrespective of the fact that they fall within the category of minority or not. Till date a specific definition or scope of rights has not been granted or enforced with respect to the LGBT community in any international statutes or legal provisions. But the extended scope of umpteen number of treaties, conventions and covenants on human rights have enabled to recognise and enforce the rights and freedom of LGBT community to a great extent. So let us examine the wide variety of the rights, international treaties, its scope, enforcement, prevailing common violations and safeguard methods.
International law and its relevance with respect to protecting and enforcing human rights of LGBT individuals.
International law defines the legal responsibilities of states in their conduct with each other, and in their treatment of individuals within states jurisdiction. It encompasses a wide range of issues of international concern, including human rights. There are at least four sources of international law. But as far as human rights of LGBT community are concerned treaty laws is relevant. States are the subject of international human rights law, as it is they who take on obligations. Individual people are the object, as it is their human rights that are to be respected. Through ratification of international human rights treaties. Whenever the municipal legal proceedings fail to address human rights abuses then individual complaints or communications are available at the regional and international level so as to safeguard the rights and freedom of the LGBT community. At the international level these mechanisms include treaty bodies, dedicated expert committees established by treaty and tasked with monitoring implementation of the varied treaties and special rapporteurs and other independent experts appointed by the united United Nations Human Rights Council to investigate and report on pressing human rights challenges faced by LGBT community.