“I am what I am, so take me as I am”

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“I am what I am, so take me as I am”

Contributed By: Shivam Gupta
Edited By: J K Varshika

It took 18 long years, for the courts to finally do what was needed. Since the first time Naz Foundation filed a PIL in the Delhi High Court in 2001, till 6th September 2018, when the Hon. Supreme Court finally gave the historic verdict.

Much has been written about this judgement, but how does it affect me as an LGBTQ person?
India’s higher judiciary has always shown the way whenever there has been a conflict about the right thing to do, and as such, the law is the first step to affect an overall change in the mindsets of the people. Something which was considered taboo, is now a talking point, with more and more people being educated about it. A legal backing will help it gain acceptance in the long run.

There are people out there, who are fighting for my rights, who made it possible for me to say that “Yes, I am a proud part of the LGBTQ community”. But there is always an inner conflict, whether to say this or not? What will people think? The truth is, the world is not so fair, and time and again people had to fight for their rights. We fought the British for our freedom, women across the world fought for suffrage, the African-American movement against racial segregation, the list goes on. In retrospect, they should not have needed to fight, but they had to. It only became possible because someone had to courage to call a spade a spade and raise their voice against the injustice.

Today we talk about integration and inclusion of diversity everywhere, but for whom? Unless I have the courage to come out and say that “Yes, I am Gay” or “Yes, I am Lesbian”, it is not fair to all those who fought this long and hard battle. I need to be courageous, and do my part as well, to make it socially acceptable. People are more open-minded today than ever, and this is the right time to take the movement forward to the smaller cities and more conservative areas. What we need today is a “Me too” movement, there is no reason to be afraid. The world today is be a better place.

Shivam Gupta is PGP 2018-2020 student at IIM Bangalore

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