In delighted recognition of the governments decision not to oppose the Delhi High Court ruling on 377 that is before the Supreme Court, we are posting a new photo movie. The photos are by Minal Mehta. And aptly, just in case the march seems a long time ago as regular life has resumed and consumed, the music she picked is called ‘What the Memories Say’ by Jason Tayaello. Thank you Minal for these great images and for a change to meander down recent memory galli (and for bringing them over). Enjoy.
Here is a series of photos, run as a slide show and saved as a movie and uploaded to Youtube and inserted here for your viewing pleasure. A small experiment that worked. More of these would be nice. If you leave your email ID in comments section, I’ll get in touch and we can figure out how to get me the original images. In the meantime, thank you Maya Ganesh for some beautiful photos… and for bringing them over to the house.
to see full screen, go here -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvGNrTN5JaE
And here is Part 2
to see full screen, go here -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBO6iquctFs
We had a fantastic March from August Kranti Maidan to Chowpatty. Estimates suggest 1500-3000 LGBT people and friends/family came for QAM 2009, making it the largest Pride march in India and definitely the most inclusive across the whole beautiful, wide-ranging LGBT community. Thank you to everyone who turned up and raised their voices along with us, and to those who couldn’t make it but were with us in spirit. The media coverage page of this blog, which features news reports/photos/videos, is being updated continously–please add it to your feed/favourites/watch list. Queer Azaadi Zindabad.
Hi everyone, lots of calls have been coming about whether the QAM event is on for this Sunday, 16th August, thanks to the swine flu. Well, we’re happy we can say – the Queer Azaadi March is ON!
It’s become increasingly clear over the last day or so that the swine flu hysteria has become far worse than the risk posed by the disease itself and we are not going to be party to that – not least when we have before us an issue as important as our fight to uphold the Delhi High Court decision.
We’re not going to be reckless. We will be providing face masks – both for the eyes (for identity) and for the mouth (for hygiene). Also, remember that in the open there’s not much to fear with respect to swine flu.
We are also happy to be able to say that the police have assured us of full support in doing the march. We will have to assemble outside August Kranti Maidan at 3 pm on Sunday and set off from there.
After some thoughtful discussions, we are completely in agreement that the Queer Azaadi March will happen as planned, in full glory. We took this decision with a deep belief in our collective and individual responsibility for your health and our health, and faith in your sense of responsibility to our health and your health. It is important to remember that the March is in an open and outside environment, not in an enclosed environment, especially one with recirculated air. No outside events have been cancelled.
It has been recommended by the medical community that any immuno-compromised persons, elderly persons, and people already ill with active health complications such as diabetes should avoid crowded gatherings. We are in agreement with these recommendations and believe that people will and should follow them.
People with fever, coughs, colds, difficulty breathing or manifesting any of the symptoms of swine flu are encouraged to stay home and take care of their health. They will be there in spirit and we can all march together next year. Send a friend instead holding a placard with your name.
Like last year, there will be many people in masks. Bright colourful, sparkly, fanciful, feathered, beautiful masks. Any people sporting swine flu preventative masks or bandannas will fit right in so you are invited to wear them. Whether worn to protect yourself from a virus or from homophobia, all masks are welcome. Both types of masks will be distributed free in limited numbers, so also plan to bring your own.
Please do join us in this celebration of ourselves as we are and in our demands for
* The 377 case will now be heard in the Supreme Court, hence our demand for this law be read down continues.
* The Constitution must include provisions to deal with all discrimination on the grounds of sexuality or gender.
*Those amongst us who are transgendered are not recognised by society. Equal citizenship rights and opportunities should be extended to all who do not fit into either of the two categories of male and female.
* The medical establishment must be made aware of the reality of our lives and our needs, and cease all insensitive and cruel attempts to ‘cure’ us.
* Every individual is under tremendous pressure to marry a person of the opposite sex, as marriage is seen as a must in our society. We are launching a campaign against all such forced marriages.
* We call for an end to homophobia and transphobia. We want freedom from violence and hate within families, in educational institutions, at places of work and in public spaces. We especially demand that fundamentalist forces stop abusing us and poisoning people’s minds against us.
We invite you, too, to join us on our march and to raise your voice along with ours!
—Queer Azadi Mumbai
Were you part of the Queer Azadi March (QAM) last year and want to take part again this year? Or will this be your first time? Well, now its almost time! In less than 10 days for the second QAM which will take place on Sunday 16th August !
All police permissions are in. The march will take place from 3 to 6 pm. Like last year we will start from August Kranti Maidan at Gowalia Tank, from where Gandhi gave his call for the British to Quit India, and we will march through Nana Chowk to Opera House and to Girgaum Chowpatty – but where last year’s march ended there, many organisers felt this was too short for all the enthusiasm, so we sought and were granted permissions to march back to August Kranti Maidan via Hughes Rd – Westside – Gamdevi Police St. Final confirmed route will be posted.
Plans for the march are in full swing! Thanks to the efforts of groups like Humsafar there will be an exceptional level of participation from community organisations. And thanks to the success of last year’s march, and the enthusiasm created by the Delhi High Court verdict, a lot of people are coming for the march from other parts of India and even abroad. Celebrities like Celina Jaitley and Milind Soman will probably be there. Its going to be a blast!
But while we hope everyone has fun, there is also a serious reason for marching. We have won a big victory in the Delhi High Court, but it is being fiercely challenged in the Supreme Court. We need to call with all our effort on the honourable judges of the Supreme Court and the government to respect the verdict of the Delhi High Court and to let freedom stand for the queer community across India. Last year’s march was to call for azaadi, this year’s march is for it to stay.
See you at the march!
The next planning meeting for the QAM 2009 will be:
Date: Sunday 8 August 2009
7/1, Sarabhai HassanAli Roopwala Bldg, 1st floor,
Moreshwar Patankar Marg (Pipe Line Road) पाइप लईन रो़ड़
Kurla West, Mumbai – 400070 (26523402)
When you come out of Kurla station, take the first right lane adjoining the Police Station. Its a crowded lane. After walking a few min and crossing the Moreshwar Patankar School, its a white building on your right. You can see the board of Awaaz-e-Niswan. Entrance is next to a medical store.
Also accessible by all buses coming to Kurla Station कुर्ला स्थानक के लिये सारे बस जो आते हैं.
Minutes of last meeting (18 July 2009) click here ->Minutes of 2 Aug QAM meeting
We are getting down to the wire and will be finalising details about pre-March, the March itself, and post-March. All LGBTI identified people and organisations please come. All are welcome.
in association with
(Glimpses of Bollywood’s dancing divas)
‘Dancing Queens’ is a performance by drag queens of aamchi Mumbai. They will walk you through some of best Hindi film dance numbers filmed on Bollywood divas.
The proceeds of the event will be used to (partly) meet expenses of the Queer Azaadi March to be held on 16 August 2009.
Come and encourage the dancing divas.
Venue and time details of ‘Dancing Queens’: 1 August 2009 at 6 p.m. at Kherwadi Social Welfare Community Center (Parishram Bhawan), Near Nirmal Nagar Police Station, Kherwadi, Bandra (East), Mumbai.
Nearest station: Bandra.
Location map for Nirmal Nagar Police Stn: http://tinyurl.com/NirmalNgrYahoo
Tickets are available at:
Humsafar Trust : (Manisha / Girish) Ph: (022) 26650547 / 26673800
Humsafar CEFE: (Dyaneshwar Raut) Ph: (022) 65760357
Update: Some pics of the event can be seen here: http://picasaweb.google.co.in/abhijit.aher/DancingQueenEvent#
presents Queer Nazaria
‘We won. We are legal’ On 2nd July 2009, the LGTBI community has been decriminalised by the High Court decision in Delhi which read down Section 377 of the IPC. It is the achievement of a long term struggle which opens a new era of freedom for sexual minorities in India. This milestone judgement, which gave us recognition, opens the doors towards inclusiveness, social and cultural acceptance and further gains in areas of civil, political and human rights. ‘There is a long road ahead to end discrimination, to ensure equal rights and the ability to exercise them are in place’, states Sunil Gupta, a Delhi based photographer and openly gay man. The spirits are high and with this first stunning achievement, we are full of hope that many more victories are to come. The film program takes us to different parts of the world and attempts to look at the queer individual and the LGTBI community in society and society’s gaze back. Glancing at this reflected image, the question that manifests asks – is it enough that a society only protects us with a set of rights or do we also need the freedom to act as who we are within that society. Legal recognition and human rights are very important but social acceptance is equally, if not more, crucial. These films will extend this essential idea of acceptance to include our sexuality, our gender presentation, our choice of sex work as livelihood, and how we love.
After each film there will be an informal discussion to share points of view amongst the audience. This film program is a teaser to relish before the Queer Azaadi Mumbai March on 16thAugust, which kicks off at August Kranti Maidan in which we will celebrate diversity and proudly state ‘hum sab ek hai’.
The Queer Azaadi March (QAM) is the collective result of several of Mumbai’s very own LGBTI individuals and organizations. This is our home, and QAM is our march together for the freedom of expression of our sexual identities and pride in being ourselves. QAM ’09 looks forward marching together with our family, friend, supporters and the people of our much loved city toward a better future for Mumbai’s queers, for acceptance, tolerance and understanding of our lives and personalities.
We would like to thank all the artists, producers and distributors for giving us their oeuvres free of cost. We are also thankful to the Alliance Française de Bombay for giving us their auditorium and screening facilities. Without this generosity we wouldn’t have been able to bring you these films.
Friday 31st July 2009 @ 6.30 pm
Alliance Française de Bombay – 40 Theosophy Hall – Marine Lines, Mumbai, Maharashtra 40002