Mumbai's annual LGBT pride parade which was scheduled for February 1 at August Kranti Maidan, was called off on Tuesday. The cancellation was announced after an anonymous message was circulated, linking it to a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed nationwide National Register of Citizens (NRC).
The LGBT pride parade participants will now gather at the Azad Maidan, but will not carry out a march. The march was organised by the Humsafar Trust. The trust had also obtained permission from the Gamdevi police station and the Mumbai Traffic Police for a crowd of over 15,000 people.
It was to begin from the historic August Kranti Maidan to Nana Chowk, Kennedy Bridge, Opera House and was to go through Girgaum.
Over the weekend, the trust noticed a message that was being circulated on Whatsapp. The message read, “Join the LGBTQIA community in upholding the values of the Constitution of India. Show up in big numbers to join the queer contingent that is against the NRC-CAA. 1st Feb 3 pm August Kranti Maidan Queer Azaadi March.”
Senior Inspector Rajendra Mohite of the Gamdevi police station issued a letter to the trust. The letter states that the permission to carry out the March was denied after the cops received information about the possibility of slogans being raised and banners will be displayed against the CAA and NRC.
Over 1,000 members of the LGBTQ community and their supporters marched through New Delhi to celebrate sexual diversity, which as per them is progressing but still has a long way till it becomes more accepting of them.
Carrying rainbow flags, balloons, and placards and dancing to the beat of drums, the LGBT supporters demanded self-identification in any gender for legal recognition rather than first registering as a transgender and then providing proof of surgery to authorities, as suggested by a government bill.
The community says the bill, yet to be approved by the Parliament, contradicts a landmark judgment by Supreme Court last year striking down a colonial-era law that made gay sex punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
(With PTI inputs)