Around 2 months back, while I was on my way to the office, I remember there were a couple of beggars at the traffic signal. They looked a little different from other people, their body language was quite different too. While some people around me were looking at them with suspicious eyes, others had an expression of being scared. Some people even abused them probably considering it as their right and blatantly violating the rules of section 377. As the light turned to green, all of us left the place but a question stuck to my mind since then.
It’s been more than a year of decriminalization of section 377, why were those people still begging??
We all have often seen people from the LGBT community begging in the trains and other public transports before section 377 got decriminalized. Blaming the government was an option then, so we did. But what about today? Even after almost 1.5 years, the situation is nearly the same in the country. They can still be found begging here and there, still being ignored and abused by the people, still not able to get employed, not able to become part of public gatherings, still treated as criminals. My question to each one of us is as simple as a WHY??
Countries like New Zealand, The Netherlands, Ireland, and many more have already gone way too far in not only accepting LGBT’s but have also been recognized as the happiest countries for gays and lesbians. Not just adapting to same-sex marriages, but they are even allowed to adopt a child and become proud parents. France had become the first country in the world to de-list transgender identification as a mental illness says an article at NBC News.
Fortunately, India has also seen significant changes in recent years. Bollywood movie – ‘Ek Ladki ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga‘ has beautifully depicted the situation and reality faced by such young gays. The kind of depression and loneliness they go through, the hesitation they feel and the fear that just keeps on developing every single day of their life have been shown in a remarkable manner. One dialogue of this movie that is worth understanding is – It is as impossible for them to love someone of the opposite sex as it is for a man & woman to love someone of same-sex. Not just Bollywood, but so many colleges have started doing street plays to spread awareness over the same. But we still have quite a LONG WAY TO GO !!
As a society, we have still not accepted them as normal human beings. A lot of us still misunderstand this as a mental and physical disorder but let me tell you, IT IS NOT !! Being a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender is as normal as being a man and a woman. What if tomorrow you have a kid or sibling who turns out to be a lesbian or gay or any of these? Will you leave them begging around? ABSOLUTELY NOT. Then, why just raise a voice when it’s your turn, why not already? We’ve been proudly following western culture in past years, but never felt the importance of broad thinking like other countries.
Let’s take a step forward to talk nicely to them next time we meet someone from their community. The government has done it’s part long back, it’s time for us to accept this change which is meant for all good and nothing else. Let’s stop seeing them as criminals.
And most important of all, Let’s create such an environment for them that there remains NO NEED OF FORMING A SEPARATE COMMUNITY !!
Also Read – The true sense of Gender Equality