Thousands of Indians Demonstrate for Gay Marriage

More than 2,000 Indians took to the streets in Delhi over the weekend to demand equal marriage rights. After three editions cancelled due to the pandemic, the Delhi Queer Pride March was finally able to resume.
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After that three-year gap, LGBT+ people and their allies were finally able to take to the streets again. The demonstrators demanded, among other things, the Indian government to open up marriage for same-sex partners.

One of the participants tells the India Times that a lot has changed over the years: "I have been going to Delhi pride parade since I was 18. I have seen it evolve over the years. In fact, a lot of young queer folks are joining us for the first time and it shows a major shift in attitudes.” This positive attitude can also be seen in other participants. A participant says to the AP news agency: "Give it another 20 years. It will be a very different world. So, I'm not going to be hopeless about it or say it's not happening. It's happening."

Yet there are also dark clouds on the horizon. Same-sex marriage is still a controversial topic in the country. The conservative Hindu nationalist government is making good use of this, now that the Supreme Court is due to rule on it this year.

A member of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling party previously stated that same-sex marriage “will cause complete havoc with the delicate balance of personal laws in the country. Two judges cannot decide on such an important social issue.”. The government's grip on the judiciary, often accused of autocratic tendencies, will therefore be tested with the forthcoming ruling.

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