India is a country where the acceptance of human sexuality is a complex issue. Over the last few years, India has changed and accepted the Homosexuality on a greater societal level but cities like Agra are still not ready for this massive change. It is shameful that a culture present in India from thousands of years is not accepted in the name of pride and principles. Most of the people in tier-2 cities are afraid of being mocked for their sexual preferences. Those who take a stand to come forward and accept it openly are not enshrined because of our ignorant society.
A recent case of a 15-year-old boy who set himself on fire left his family and neighbours in torment. This incident took place at Madia Katra region of Agra on 3rd January 2016. The boy is a student of XI class and is an A-grade student with a distinction in his class X examinations. He was seen getting intimate with a male friend by one of his neighbours in the nearby park. The news spread in the neighborhood and some people started teasing him to be gay. He could not bear the harassment and locked himself in the room for two days. On Sunday, the boy suddenly ran outside the room and burnt himself by pouring diesel on himself, which he had stolen from a car. As soon as people heard him screaming, they poured water on him and wrapped him in a blanket. His family rushed him to the hospital, where doctors said that he sustained 40% burns on his body. He had received severe burns in the legs and chest but he is out of danger.
A 15-year-old bright student who aspires to become an Engineer took such an extreme step. A kid who is strolling to discover his own individuality tried to kill himself because society is blinded by the respect of the Indian culture, they don’t even understand. We beat our chest out to protest against inequality but forget to accept the individual choice of a person. There are many like this 15-year-old who are struggling for their identity. As a nation, it’s high time that we stop obsessing over preserving our culture and start defending for social equality and liberalism.
5 Jan 2016
Avni S. Singh