Advancing with aplomb

After a three-year hiatus, the LGBTQIA+ community was back on the roads of Lutyens’ Delhi with colourful dresses and slogans louder than ever in the Delhi Pride Parade 2022-2023

PROUD AND DEFIANT: The overall atmosphere only suggested love and celebrations

At 3 pm on Sunday, January 8, the exit number three of Barakhamba metro station was immersed in colourful dresses, sassy slogans, the sound of dhol and rainbow flags. People smiled, laughed, cheered and hugged each other. Despite the winter chills, more than 2,000 people joined the Delhi Pride Parade and celebrated the different shades of queerness. There were transpersons, lesbians, gays, bisexuals, pansexuals, asexuals, gender nonconforming and intersex people.

“In all the pride parades before this, there were so many people wearing masks to hide their identity. But this time, there were fewer people who were wearing masks. It only shows how our society is growing and becoming more accepting towards queer people,” observes Bharat Aggarwal, a gay man at the pride.

“Being queer, you always feel alone all the time. But being in a pride walk makes you feel that there are a lot of people around you who are like you. This is not just empowering, but also creates a sense of harmony and belonging,” he adds.

Allies from the sexual majority were also present at the pride to shower their support for queer people.

Ramsha Khan, who calls herself an ally of LGBTQIA+ movement, visited the parade for the first time.

“I came here with no expectations. And once I am here, I realise that this is not just a parade, it is a festival of love, sexuality and identity. There is so much warmth, and people are just cheering each other, it all feels so nice,” she says.

The walk started from the Barakhamba metro station and ended at Jantar Mantar area. The organisers said that the march was not just for the LGBTQIA+ community, but also for the minorities of India, indigenous people displaced from their homelands, persecution of activists, clean environment and people who lost their lives during the pandemic.

VIBING AROUND: There was laughter, love, and acceptance at the Delhi Pride Walk
LOUDER THAN WORDS: There were posters with quotes around love and queerness
BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL: Different props were used to display the shades of queerness
STRONG MESSAGE: A banner that seeks to quash boundaries in love
COLORS OF INCLUSIVITY: Many people in the walk were wrapped in rainbow flags
EXPRESSING ONESELF: Visitors expressed themselves in different ways
ON THE BEAT: People grooved to the beats of the dhol as they celebrated love
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Shehwaaz covers community, sexuality, gender, and other social issues for Patriot.