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Hundreds Celebrate Gay Pride In India.

Hundreds of participants gathered at Jantar Mantar on Saturday to celebrate gay pride in India. The event marked the second anniversary of the Delhi High Court’s historic decision to decriminalize homosexuality.

Hindustan Times reports:

It was a sea of masked faces and rainbow coloured scarves, as the LGBT community took to the streets to commemorate the second anniversary of Delhi High Court’s historic judgment of decriminalising homosexuality. On July 2nd, 2009, Delhi high court, restored dignity and rights to LGBTQI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex) people in India by amending Section 377 to decriminalize adult consensual same-sex activity in private.

While the community got legal freedom, the society is yet to accept them as ‘normal’. While the participants of gay pride parade were in jubilant mood, they demanded for more tolerance and sensitivity from society. At the highly charged event, hundreds of queer youngsters and gay supporters came dressed up, shouted slogans, shared experiences and mingled with the like minded.

Inspired by the New York’s legalisation of gay marriage, many showed hope for a similar support by the Indian government, “We want it(legislation of gay marriage) to happen in India. Now, we can roam around, hold hands here, but there’s still a question mark. India copies everything from the West be it a pen or a car, then why not copy the New York judgment? asks Rupali Bhardwaj, a participant.

India Today Adds:

For most homosexuals and transgenders, issues such as forced marriages, discrimination at workplace, social stigma and ostracisation are still very much a reality. Participants at the parade, titled ‘Jashn-e-Azadi’ (a celebration of freedom), said they had gathered at Jantar Mantar not only to celebrate the second anniversary of the high court judgment but also to spread awareness about the problems faced by the community. Organisers of the parade issued a statement, titled ‘Celebrating freedom’, which detailed the demands of the community.

It urged the government to pass an anti-discrimination law to address sexual orientation and gender identity issues. “The authorities should end discrimination against members of the LGBT community at work places, schools, hospitals and other institutions,” the statement read. They also demanded that the Supreme Court uphold the 2009 high court decision, besides the setting up of transgender boards across the country.

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Read more about the parade via HIDUSTAN TIMES