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Facebook deletes photo of gay Sikh man kissing another man, draws flak

Social networking website Facebook sparked off a debate when it suspended the account of Kanwar Anit Singh Saini for 12 hours after he posted a picture of him kissing another man.



Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: Social networking website Facebook sparked off a debate when it suspended the account of Kanwar Anit Singh Saini for 12 hours after he posted a picture of him kissing another man.

Saini, 32, posted the picture in protest of Section 377 that criminalises gay sex in India.

"Last night my uncle told me if they knew i was gay before 20 they would have killed me. He also said im gay cause i was molested as a kid and im on "the wrong path"...and when was i getting married?... i laughed and hung up. He comes from the same backwards place a whole minority were just recriminalized ... F*** my uncle. F*** section 377. Im very proud to be illegal in any context. I owe that to my sikhi heritage and my mom. Also, for all the ranting about genocide i hear...i rarely see solidarity. So...f*** em all. #sikhknowledge #baagi #377 #section377 xoxox," wrote Saini.

The post stirred up a row on LGBT rights and Sikhism and the photograph went viral within moments.

Saini was among thousands of activists, who had gathered in over 30 cities across the world on Sunday to observe the Global Day of Rage.

On Monday, Saini received a message from Facebook saying his account had been suspended for 12 hours and his photo had been removed because it breached their terms and policies.

Saini then posted the same photograph on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr where he also hit out at Facebook`s screening policy.

The website Buzzfeed quoted Saini, a speech-language pathologist in Toronto, as saying he was angry because his posts "tease out important questions I want people to ask. So, the thread was people going back and forth with hate/rebuttals/logical rebuttals/dumb rebuttals...so important to our time in history."

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