India is a country where one particular gender has always been glorified and other genders were ignored be it women or transgender. And when it comes to sexuality, we become more and more conservatives. Sexual orientation of any gender is not being looked at in Indian society, be it a man or a woman. Sexuality is something that should be hidden in seven curtains according to the Indian society. Let’s not be bias in accepting that men also suffer to an extent, if not equal, to enjoy his sexuality. Sex is a taboo in India as parents find children immature of knowing about sex and feel shy talking about before adolescents. India is a country where buying condoms results in suspicious smile of the shopkeeper and sanitary pads are given in black plastic bags because nobody should know that ‘you are bleeding’.
It is in this country, that today we are talking about homosexuality. Just think, people are not ready to accept your heterosexuality, how will they react to your homosexuality? The Supreme Court of India on 6 September 2018 invalidated part of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code decriminalising homosexuality in India. One judge said that this landmark decision would pave the way for a better future. But can better future be decided without inclusion of the society? Because ultimately, after being in a homosexual relationship, one will need to be settled in a ‘society’ and if that society is not ready to accept, then the couple will not be able to live happily.
We are living in 21st century, postmodern era we call it, and still consider an individual’s sexual orientation a taboo. Do you think we are going in right direction?
When we say homosexuality goes against the nature or it is a mental disorder as it cannot lead the couple to procreation which is considered the “ULTIMATE GOAL” of marriage in Indian society, we often forget that being homosexual is not an illness, it a nature’s call and one should respect it. Homosexuality is a biological phenomenon and when it comes to procreation, option of adopting a child is always there.
We are living in 21st century, postmodern era we call it, and still consider an individual’s sexual orientation a taboo. Do you think we are going in right direction? It’s high time, India should accept the sexual orientation of individuals and respect it. Let’s talk about the taboo and customs associated with SEX in India. It is something to be done in private sphere, yet we are very much interested in the custom of “White Bed sheet” on the very first night of our son’s married life. We ourselves are contradictory in nature here, on one side, sex is something very personal and on the other, the son should come and hand over the blood stained bed sheet to parents. Isn’t it a contradiction? Another example is, a man can easily talk about his sexual desires to his friends, but if a woman craves for her sexual desires, she is prostitute. This is the hypocrisy we are functioning in since long.
Now coming to homosexuality, it is much ignored and mocked at in the history of India. In Indian cinema also we see how the homosexual characters are used as clowns, they are there just to make audience laugh. No sensitivity in dealing with homosexuals can be seen in Indian cinema. The condition is same in society. We are ready to mock at a man if he is more interested in man, rather than a woman, but we don’t want to explore his sexuality in terms of his feelings and mental trauma he is facing because of our rejection.
There are some so called progressives out there, who would advocate the rights of homosexuals, someone among the readers can also be the advocate. If you consider that you are ok with the homosexual relationships and ready to accept them in society, ask yourself a self-evaluating question: if your son or daughter comes to you and confesses that he/she is a homosexual and wants to marry to his/her homosexual partner, what would be your instant reaction? Your instant reaction to this question, decides your credibility towards homosexual relationships. If even for a second, you thought, “no, my son/daughter cannot be like this”, then my dear friend, you are mentally ill not your homosexual son/daughter. And if you began thinking about your son’s/daughter’s wedding dress, then you have a responsibility on your shoulders to help the homosexual win their ‘half won battle’.
With this judgement homosexuals have just won half battle, their fight is now within the society, and as a responsible and progressive society, let us welcome them whole heartedly to the mainstream society. Let them live, let them explore their sexuality. Indian society needs to be that much open to accept different variants of sexualities.
The Authour: Ms. Mousam, Research Scholar (PhD), Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar, Gujarat (India), 382030, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org