DUB Speak

Why Homosexuality in India is Still A Taboo

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World renowned Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev claims to have a “cure” for the “disease” called “homosexuality”. He has discovered some asanas or body postures that can make the diseased person “normal” again.

It is sometimes hard for me to believe that I’m living in the 21st century. That, in the century that is characterized by technological advancements, globalization and liberal thinking, most people still prefer to reside in the stone age and refuse to come out of their shell, or den, in this case.

Homosexuality is said to be a condition of body and mind, wherein one is attracted to members of the same sex. It is as natural and normal as the transformation of a caterpillar to a fluttering butterfly. But the majority of narrow minds in the Indian Diaspora make it very difficult to establish homosexuality as an accepted form of existence. The problem lies in the Indian family ethos. Advertisements on AIDS and condoms on TV are hurriedly changed, met with awkward silences and glowering eyes of parents. Thus open talking about homosexuality of the child is unthinkable. The child finds it very hard to put forth his points, confide in his parents in such a discouraging atmosphere. In rare cases, when people muster up courage and openly declare their homosexuality, they are met with vivid expressions of horror, disbelief, in -acceptance, guilt and shame (in the same order). The fear of stigmatization is a constant reminder of the pitfalls that may follow. This is a major reason why most families choose not to support their children and force them into marriages and seek all sorts of “treatments”, not caring about wants of the child, thus pushing him/her into an abysm of despair.

Another problematic area is workplace. Homosexuals are more often than not ridiculed at, discriminated against, paid less compared to their counterparts and are never incorporated into the wider social group. Gay couples and marriages are laughed off as unnatural and they are subjected to worldly prejudices, escalating to discrimination. In fact, in many serials, Gay mannerisms are introduced to add the necessary spice and humor.

But, as they say, change is inevitable, and slowly but surely, people are changing their attitude towards this topic. Landmark legislation was the reading down of section 377 of the IPC that criminalized homosexual activities, and now the Indian legal system recognizes gay affiliations. Gay parades now feature annually Delhi Calendar. They have played and continued to play a major role in emancipation of the LGBT community and in spreading ethical awareness about the very same. Several organizations, like the NAZ FOUNDATION, have vehemently supported this cause and have subsequently made admirable efforts to improve the current, prevailing situation. And thus, comes back my realization, that I live in the 21st century and not the Stone Age.

A society is judged by the people who live in it. We all must broaden our horizons, break away from age old myths and embrace a more progressive and happier tomorrow.

Image credits: Firstpost 

[email protected];I think my life would be much better off if I’d make as much effort in reading books as much as I do in buying them. A bibliophile through and through, I possess a keen interest in the history of art and museums and I believe that walking with oneself is the best form of adventure. On a more random (a.k.a siddhi) note, my dream destination is the Rann of Kuttchh, because I find it oddly displaced in time, an entirely different story, and that’s how I truly want to be.

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