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India’s LGBT activism history: early 1990s

ABVA_1992
Image source: Mario d’Penha

On August 11, 1992, AIDS Bhedbhav Virodhi Andolan (ABVA) staged the first known protest against police harassment of LGBT people in India, The protest was against police raids that targeted men cruising for men in Central Park, Connaught Place in New Delhi. The protest was held at the police headquarters in the ITO area of Delhi.

ABVA was, in 1991, the first organization to challenge Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. Its historic publication ‘Less Than Gay: A Citizen’s Report’

View the interview with Shumona Khanna – then a law student – in which she discusses the early-1990s activism of which Siddharth Gautam, founder of ABVA, and the Lawyers’ Collective were an integral part.

In 1996, Vimal Balasubrahmanyan wrote an article in Economic and Political Weekly summarizing much of this history. Read this article here.


Thanks to Mario d’Penha for sharing the newspaper clipping with LGBT-India, and for consent to republish it on Orinam.

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