Gohil’s palace grounds, which his great grandfather had established in 1920, the centre resides 15km from Rajpipla on the banks of the Narmada River, a retreat for foreign dignitaries who would come visit.
Gohil regained access to his ancestral property after renowned lawyer and Indian member of parliament Meenakshi Lekhi came on national television to say that it’s illegal to disown a rightful heir due to his sexual preference. Consequently, Gohil’s father Maharana Shri Raghubir Singhji Rajendrasinghji Sahib gave an interview in the country’s most widely circulated newspaper, The Times of India, admitting that disowning Gohil came from public coercion and the maharana of Rajpipla regrets the decision.“My father is supportive of what I do but it’s still very formal,” Gohil says. “We don’t talk much with each other unless it has to do with the business.”
As Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that criminalises homosexuality sits with the Supreme Court for reconsideration this year after an unfavourable verdict in 2013, Gohil’s taking advantage of the Act of Privacy that was passed last year. Simply stated: the government can’t pry into your life behind closed doors.
Hanumanteshwar Amar 1927 is set to become a holistic hub for the LGBTQ community. English and technology education will be a prime focus. There’ll be a state-of-the-art medical centre for sexual health complemented by spiritual healing in the form of music, meditation and yoga. It almost sounds like an attractive holiday destination. Gohil stresses that the key demographic are sexual minorities from small-town India. “I want to empower them and give them a platform. To stand on their own feet and earn their own living.” But it’s not only limited to the locals; the centre has already hosted international visitors in some of the planned 20 to 25 rooms
Gohil (left) takes part in the parade event of the LA Pride Music Festival 2016 in West Hollywood, California.