On Saturday, Hauz Khas Village in New Delhi hosted a queer dance party to celebrate India’s LGBT community and continue the struggle against the country’s ban on homosexuality.
The “Dance for Pride” party included a flash mob, and was produced by dating-app Scruff and Those in Need, a not-for-profit that advocates for minorities.
“There are not many events in India, other than Pride, when we can come down on streets and talk about our sexuality,” says one young participant.
“One’s sexual orientation is not the parameter to judge one’s decisions and choices. We have had the liberty and freedom to choose our gender identity [and] we are coming together to celebrate this freedom of choice,” organizers said in an announcement for the event. “We wish to change the perception with which the society has seen them, make them forget all the harassment they have been through, and spread joy through the medium of dance with the theme of breaking stereotypes.”
Homosexuality is technically illegal in India, as proscribed in Section 377 of the criminal code, a holdover from British colonial times. In 2009, Delhi’s High Court overturned Section 377, but in 2013, the Supreme Court of India reinstated it. Efforts at a repeal in Parliament have failed, but last February, the Supreme Court agreed to submit petitions to abolish Section 377 to a judicial panel, which will conduct a thorough hearing.