The second John Marsden Memorial Lecture will be given on the evening of Monday, 30 November 2009 inï¿½ the Grand Hall of the Sydney Masonic Centre, 66 Goulburn Street, Sydney at 5.30pm for 6pm. The lecture will be delivered by Sri Anand Grover, who is a senior advocate at the Supreme Court of India in New Delhi.
Mr Grover was leading counsel in the important recent case of Naz Foundation v Union of India, decided by the Delhi High Court in July 2009. That decision held that the 149 year old s377 of the Indian Penal Code, drafted by Thomas Macaulay, was invalid under the Indian Constitution as conflicting with the requirements of the Constitution to protect individual equality and privacy. The section, which is still reflected in the laws of 31 of 53 countries of the Commonwealth of Nations, prohibited sexual activity between adult same-sex partners.ï¿½ An appeal has been lodged to the Supreme Court of India.ï¿½ However, it is not certain whether the government of India itself will appeal.
In addition to his role as a leading advocate at the bar in India, Mr Grover is the United Nations special rapporteur on the right to health. More than a decade ago, in Mumbai, he established the Lawyersâ Collective on HIV/AIDS, which has played an important part in informing public opinion in India about the HIV/AIDS epidemic.ï¿½ His wife, Indira, also a senior advocate at the Supreme Court, is presently an additional solicitor-general of India.ï¿½ He is visiting Australia in his capacity as UN special rapporteur on health.ï¿½
The lecture will be open to the public and members of the bar are invited. Admission is free.ï¿½ Mr Grover will be introduced by the Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG, past justice of the High Court of Australia.ï¿½ The lecture remembers the role of the late John Marsden, one time president of the NSW Law Society and advocate of gay law reform.
26 November 2009