New Delhi: Arranged marriages – a phenomenon that is inherent in the Indian culture is now breaking boundaries with the first gay personals advert being placed in a daily.
Harish Iyer's mother posted a personals advertisement in a daily to find a groom for her son. She had reportedly approached three other dailies before finalising on a leading tabloid. The three leading newspapers had all refused on legal grounds.
Harish is a popular activist based in Mumbai. He has appeared in several television shows like 'Satyameva Jayate',0 'We The People' and for a show on 'BBC2' to support the LGBT community and has also actively spoken against child abuse both on TV and on the popular social issues forum 'TedX'.
The ad read, “Seeking 25-40, Well Placed, Animal-Loving, Vegetarian Groom for my son (36, 5’11’’) who works with an NGO. Caste no bar (though Iyer preferred).”
Homosexuality is essentially a crime in India. Although Article 377 (Law against sexual acts against the order of nature) was repealed by a court in 2009, it was reinstated, much to the dismay of LGBT supporters, in 2011.
The mention of caste in the ad is sure to spark some controversies, but the ad on the whole may be a positive step in bringing gay rights to the fore giving them equal opportunities to find a partner.