LGBTQ activist Sukhnidh Kaur on what the SC judgement means to her
LGBTQ activist Sukhnidh Kaur, 19, who conducted a survey on homophobia in Indian schools earlier this year and documented it on Insta, opens up about what this verdict means to her
What was your immediate reaction on hearing the verdict? What does it mean to you, and what's next?
I was with a friend, and my phone started buzzing as the messages started pouring in, with friends from across the world sending congrats and love. We took a moment to sit down... we were so overwhelmed... The section has acted as a primary catalyst in a vicious cycle of discrimination for many years. Now, people can no longer use it to justify a violation of privacy and discrimination... Today marks a crucial step in the humanisation of the community in India, which has struggled for years. It has been offered a semblance of dignity.
Do you feel the law will still have its effect in practice?
What happened today is not going to change the way LGBTQ+ students are treated in Indian schools. It is, however, going to lead to a better understanding of their lives and sociopolitical identities. Students, teachers, and principals will hopefully be able to challenge the regressive notion of homophobia within schools with redefined confidence.
What are the changes you want to see outside the law?
I would like to see campaigns for bettering education and awareness surround the LGBTQ+ community and its struggles, large-scale community intervention aimed at those who suffer from socioeconomic strife furthered by their identities as LGBTQ+ citizens, and new and improved platforms for them to be able to express themselves freely.
How challenging is it as a young LGTBQ activist?
Being an LGBTQ+ activist is associated with stigma, but this inconvenience is worth every life made better. My advice to budding activists is to use their own privilege to uplift the community, to focus on those in socioeconomically weaker sections and to continue fighting the good fight.
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