India is a young and developing country which needs people who themselves work on creating a change that they wish to see around them. Although we don’t come across such inspirational stories daily, there are many heroes amongst us whose efforts make the lives of people around them better.
The Supreme Court of India, in a breakthrough verdict in 2018 decriminalized Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that had criminalized homosexuality deeming it as an ‘unnatural offence’. Despite the legal sanction, the members of the LGBTQ+ community are still looking for social acceptance. One such person, Naveen Noronha - an aspiring comedian, decided to take matters in his own hands. Naveen came out as a member of the LGBTQ+ community in the first few minutes of his first comedy stint. Today, he feels empowered and glad that he acted on impulse as it made it easier for people to accept him.
“I chose stand-up comedy to talk about my life because it is very easier to relate to people when you talk about your struggles through humor. I think it’s the most human thing that people can understand.” - Naveen Noronha, stand-up comedian
Naveen believes that using comedy to talk about his/her lifestyle defies the ideas of difference. The audience can connect to the stories believing the person in the stories have a similar story to tell. According to him, it is very important that people start accepting the members of the LGBTQ+ community as a part of their society and not different people. He is constantly trying to defy the stereotypes that are socially instilled in the minds of the majority.
“I think this initiative is important because it shows us that there are different kinds of role model from different parts of the society and there is a great impact to be had by having a socially and politically conscious citizenry. Our law needs to reflect this kind of diversity and inclusiveness.” - Dhwani Mehta, Founder, Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy
“I think for good citizens, we need to go in for education for all. It may mean restructuring the learning centres – infrastructure, teachers and everything. But inclusion is the ultimate winner.” - Uma Thuli, Educationist and Founder, Amar Jyoti Charitable Trust
Watch to know the stories that make a change and inspire more to step up and make a difference