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June- the Pride Month: Assam too celebrates

“Love Simon” hit the box office on 16 March, 2018 with the tweet, “He’s done keeping his story straight” giving the “Pride” movement and the queer community a tremendous momentum as this coming-of-age movie of a young gay, Simon Spiels, served as the catalyst for many from LGBT community across the world to come out of the closet.

Over the years, many critically acclaimed movies like “Blue Is The Warmest Colour” (2013) have tried to break the heteronormative discourse. Mira Nair’s “Kamasutra” attempted to bring this culture into India, but the movie was banned in the country. However, the citizens of this nation, who like their global counterparts, have gallantly come out to the streets and theatres in their very own Queer Pride movement.

Guwahati, as well as North East India, has seen its first Queer Pride movement on 9 February 2014. In a bid to protest against the Supreme Court’s verdict on the criminalization of all intercourse other than between a man and a woman irrespective of the consent between the adults involved as per Chapter XVI- Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, about 150 participants from across the country took part in this historical moment. From then on, this has become an annual event and its fourth version took place in February 2017, which sadly had a lesser turnout than the previous years. The educational institutions have also joined the cause. In 2018, Tezpur University played its part in spreading awareness on this matter. Organised by XUKIA, the session saw many trans-genders sharing their experience and a girl came out as queer in the event. A documentary on a Bengaluru guy, who underwent gender transition was also screened.

These events promise a better future this pride month of June, as because of social media and young influential celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Harry Styles people, especially, the Gen Y and Gen Z, are slowly dismantling the cis-normative structure that has been binding this society

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Siddharth Deb