Submitted by: Karan Yadav
Edited by: Shubhrika Bahadur Satyawakta
Charles Dickens once said “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.”
Same can be said for this year’s Queer Pride Parade, marking a representation of love and struggle for ten years for the battle against shame, stigma and homophobia. With the sun hidden behind the smog, hundreds of citizens gathered at the Tolstoy Marg, Barakhamba Road for a unique celebration of love and joy; a rebellion in the form of love and a cry in a form of joy. With a notion to we rewrite their history in the country where same sex marriage is considered as illegal.
The LGBT community came together for a representation of not just one color of love but seven different colors. The parade started at Tolstoy Marg with people singing and cheering, holding different colors of balloons, painting the street with colors in a dull smoggy afternoon. With an atmosphere filled with love and happiness, the crowd walked through the streets and gathered at Jantar Mantar, where we witnessed a combination of performances including dances, singing and a speech. In a fun and happy way, the pride asked for a change in the system and for a stop on the hate crime against them. Painted faces in the colors of rainbow represented different emotions and struggles one went through his/her life and demanded only one thing; love.
With people singing and dancing to the beats of drums, many said they were frustrated with the law but were waiting for a change. “We are fighting for the right of everybody in this country to live as equal citizens, in a way one wants to live. We believe in a society where there is no word like homophobia and everyone is accepting and kind to each other”. Indian law makes homosexuality punishable by upto 10 years in prison. In 2009 we saw the court declaring the law as unconstitutional, but was overturned four years later. Last year, we saw a ray of light when the Supreme Court said it would reconsider its decision.
With a gathering of around fifteen hundred people, we saw more support and sensitivity this year. As the organizer described the motto of this year’s parade as a march against the oppressive attacks and varied forms of discrimination visited upon hijras, khotis, trans-women ,trans-men, lesbian, gay, bisexual people in public and private spaces, we hope to see a change in our constitution, in our society and in our thinking. As heart never sees for who they are falling for, love is love, there is nothing natural or unnatural about it.