BENGALURU: The Karnataka Queer Habba and Namma Pride March, which took place on Sunday from Tulsi Park to Town Hall, saw participation from a large number of working professionals and students who spoke about how people are now becoming more accepting towards the LGBTQ+ community after Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code was decriminalised in 2018.
Sneha Mishra, who works at HDFC bank, had previously attended two pride marches in Mumbai, and said, “We saw more than 5,000 participants this year, so there is definitely more acceptance towards the community. Parents too are supporting children who come out.”
And this change is trickling down onto professional levels too. Yatin, an ally of the community who works at Goldman Sachs said there are many positive changes from the corporate perspective and several events are conducted in offices to increase awareness among employees. The general consensus at the march, however, was that more changes were still required to improve the lives of community members. While speaking about the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2019, Yatin said, “It’s a humiliating experience for an individual to seek a certificate from a government official in order to be identified as a transgender person. The society and government need more time in order to change.”
Besides students and young professionals, families too were in attendance at the march. Chetana, a lactation consultant who attended the march with her husband and two children, said, “My kids are fairly aware about the stereotypes the society and government are setting. Being a part of this march will ensure that the younger generation will not be discriminative.”
While rainbow flags were the most common prop used, participants also relied on banners to spread messages, such as, ‘Stop using god to justify hatred’ and ‘Together we will build a world that is free and equal’.