While the Indian laws on ‘Sex Toys’ production, selling and buying are not yet clear, Section 292 of Indian Penal Code 1860 prohibits the sales, distribution, possession, circulation of obscene objects. They remained a thing of the shady markets until Indian e-commerce companies brought them out in open for the convenience of all the people alike, and tagged them under the label of ‘Personal Products’.
“A bunch of products that we carry in the Adult category section are merely machines that are used by adults for performing various functions like neck massage, head massage, ear massage, feet massage, back massage and hand massage. The shape and forms of some of these products are made to serve a dual purpose and adults derive pleasure by using them in multiple applications that they like or choose to. That products is not considered a SEX TOY.” says e-commerce portal IMBesharam.
However even this justification is not enough to satisfy the Government’s objections. In a report by the Business Standard, the crime branch of the Delhi Police has recently asked the Information & Broadcasting Ministry to look into these websites. The police department has received a complaint against these websites saying that they are “openly promoting and selling objectionable products illegally and showing objectionable content on their websites” The websites might be blocked if government finds them guilty.
Currently, the online portals which are selling adult products like condoms, vibrators, lubricants etc. in India include Flipkart, IMbesharam, thatspersonal, Kaamastra, Shykart, Ohmysecrets among others.
Sexual wellness industry is flourishing in India with the adult sexual products market expected to grow INR 2450 crores in 2016 and INR 8700 crores in 2020. A recent report by one of these players shows a nationwide demand for these sexual wellness products. With sex being a taboo in India, and technology companies trying to do their bit in helping Indians explore this category of products, including necessary items like lubes and condoms, discreetly, the Government might have to handle this case sensitively.
Image Source: IMBesharam