Bol­ly­wood vibes at Pride Pa­rade

HT City - - Front Page - Naina Arora naina.arora@hin­dus­tan­times.com

As rain­bow hues — in flags, plac­ards, stoles, head bands, bindi art, ban­gles and even anti-pol­lu­tion masks — ruled Delhi’s streets, mark­ing 10 years of the Delhi Queer Pride Pa­rade on Sun­day, there was some­thing filmi about it! We mean Bol­ly­wood­in­spired slo­gans and cre­ative cos­play.

“I am the queen of Pad­ma­vati (sic),” said Deep­an­shu Goswami — a cor­po­rate pro­fes­sional from In­dore — who stood out in tra­di­tional at­tire and jewellery, dressed as ac­tor Deepika Padukone’s char­ac­ter in an up­com­ing film.

“I am wear­ing this at­tire be­cause of the Pad­ma­vati craze these days. Also, there is no point in lead­ing a dou­ble life. I have been at­tend­ing the pride pa­rade for seven years now. I’ve been out of the closet out with my fam­ily, friends and col­leagues,” said Deep­an­shu.

He was among the scores of peo­ple from across the world who walked in sol­i­dar­ity from Tol­stoy Marg to Jan­tar Man­tar, mark­ing 10 years of a col­lec­tive on­go­ing strug­gle to bat­tle ho­mo­pho­bia and trans­pho­bia.

Amid chants of free­dom, and dhol beats — to which the crowd mer­rily danced — filmin­spired taglines such as Main Tera Boyfriend, Tu Mera Boyfriend, Du­niya Kehndi Na Na Na; Bedardi Raja, 377 Hataja; and Munni Bad­naam Hui, Sheila Jawaan Hui, Ek Duje Ke Liye were hard to miss.

The heavy smog chok­ing the city couldn’t de­ter their spirit, as the gath­er­ing saw sup­port in sev­eral ex­pats — from coun­tries such as Ire­land, Ger­many, and Scot­land, US — who turned up wear­ing an­tipol­lu­tion masks. San­dra, from Ger­many, said, “With­out a mask, it would’ve been hard. It’s nice to see so many peo­ple come to­gether to try to bring about a change.”

Mem­bers and sup­port­ers of the queer com­mu­nity protested against the dis­crim­i­na­tion and marginal­i­sa­tion of the com­mu­nity, de­mand­ing the law crim­i­nal­is­ing ho­mo­sex­ual acts to be re­pealed. They are hope­ful as the move­ment has only been gain­ing mo­men­tum. “Over the years, there has been an in­crease in par­tic­i­pa­tion. To­day, peo­ple come to the pride with so much con­fi­dence,” said Rafiul Alom Rah­man, an LGBTQ ac­tivist and found­ing mem­ber of DUQC.

PHO­TOS: RAAJESSH KASHYAP/HT

Glimpses from the Queer Pride Pa­rade in Delhi on Sun­day

Deep­an­shu Goswami dressed as a queen

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