NEW DEHLI,  January 28 (RAPSI) - The Supreme Court in India has refused to review its ruling of last December that criminalizes same-gender relationships, NDTV reported Tuesday.

The country’s highest court thus rejected motions to review that were filed by both the Indian government and gay activists.

On December 11, the Supreme Court overturned the 2009 ruling of the Delhi high court that allowed sexual relationships between two adults of the same gender and found Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code to be inconsistent with the Indian Constitution.

The ruling was criticized by opponents of non-conventional relationships, including public and religious activists from Hindu, Christian and Muslim groups. They argued that the 2009 ruling was immoral and ran counter to the foundations of Indian culture. In December last year, the Supreme Court sided with the opponents and reversed the ruling.

The renewed ban prompted protests by gay communities, their supporters and human rights activists. The government also petitioned the court to annul the ruling.

Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which stipulates a penalty for sex "against the order of nature," stems from the colonial era. Although the courts rarely hear gay sex cases, the offense is technically punishable by a fine or a prison term of up to 10 years.