Kalki Subramaniam/ Arun Lakshman
Kalki Subramaniam is a celebrated Indian transgender activist who is also a writer, painter, poet, and motivational speaker. She has spoken to over a million students across various universities within and outside the country. She is the founder of the Sahodhari Foundation which works for the rights of the transgender community. Kalki has been one of the key persons who fought legally for the community and won a landmark victory in 2014 from the Supreme Court of India which gave them the rights of ‘ Third Gender’ and gave them the right to identify as male, female, or third gender.
Kalki spoke to Arun Lakshman on the same-sex marriage issue
What is your opinion on same sex marriage ?
It is an individual right and I support it 100 percent.
Will the concept of same-sex marriage change the social system of our country?
Ours is a democratic country whose constitutions celebrates and respects an individual’s right firmly. People who feared exclusion will be relieved and happy.
Will the same-sex marriage ruin the existing system in the country?
No, it will never ruin the existing system. Decades ago people used to say women should not be educated, see what happened. Today more and more women are getting educated and becoming independent which is absolutely good and that is what a civilized society does. Women contribute to our country’s development in a huge way. Same way if same-sex marriage is legalized okay and lesbian people could contribute hugely for the even the development of our country.
Will same-sex marriage affect the trans community?
Same-sex marriages will not affect the transgender community. We have many issues which are a priority to us. Poverty is very prevalent in the transgender community. Employment, livelihood, health, housing, family inclusion are our issues and Though we support same-sex marriage our issues are different.
Are the courts the decision-makers in such a crucial social matter as same-sex marriage?
For legal protection, we definitely need the court’s intervention. That is one of the major reasons why we need same-sex marriage legalization from the Supreme Court of India.
People who support same-sex marriages point out same-sex marriages in some Western countries. Your comment?
That is actually no need to point out Western countries even in our famous epics such as Mahabharata and Kamasutra we see references to same-sex love and marriage.
Several prominent religions and spiritual and religious leaders are against same-sex marriage. Your comment
I want to tell them that opposing same-sex love and marriage is what colonization has done to our country I want to tell them “Please turn back and see your roots, you belong to a country that has believed in diversity and inclusion even doing ancient times. Opposing LGBT communities’ right is what colonization has done to you”.