Sao Paulo’s city council has adopted legislation calling for an annual Heterosexual Pride Day to be celebrated on the third Sunday in December.

Mayor Gilberto Kassab of Sao Paulo, South America’s biggest city, must sign the proposal before it becomes law. He has said that he is studying it and his office would not say whether he supports the legislation or not.

Carlos Apolinario, who wrote the proposal, said that Heterosexual Pride Day is “not anti-gay but a protest against the privileges the gay community enjoys.”

He said one of the privileges was Sao Paulo’s Gay Pride Day Parade being held on Paulista Avenue, one of the main roads in the densely populated city, while the March for Jesus, organised by evangelical groups isn’t allowed on the same road.

Apolinario added: "I respect gays and I am against any kind of aggression made against them. I have no trouble coexisting with gays as long as their behaviour is normal."

Brazil’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Association warned that the legislation could bring about homophobic violence.

The association made a statement saying: "How many LGBTs will be attacked because of the message that only heterosexuality makes someone a moral person and a good citizen.

"The celebration of heterosexual pride is inappropriate because it belittles the just cause of the LGBT community, Unlike homosexuals, heterosexuals are not discriminated against simply for being heterosexuals."

A recent report by gay rights group Grupo Gay de Bahia said that 260 gay people were murdered in Brazil last year, an increase of 113 per cent over the last five years.