Out of Sec 377 shadow, same-sex couples no longer have to hold super exclusive parties; doors are now open. From rare, expensive, hush-hush parties in the past to a multitude of well-publicised affordable options now, the city’s same-sex party scene is clearly heating up
For same-sex partygoers in the city, Section 377 had long been the bane of their existence. From having to find private, and therefore, outrageously expensive locations to keeping parties hush-hush and ensuring that there were no police raids, organising a gay party was no walk in the park.
“Unlike straight people, who have always had the luxury of choosing between multiple parties and having a ball without spending much money, members of the gay community had to wait for the rare exclusive party to turn up. If we wanted to use a lounge for holding a gay party, we had to nearly always lie and say we were holding a birthday party — birthday cakes and decoration thrown in,” said Vikram Doctor, founder, Gay Bombay, a non-commercial organisation, which organises such parties.
“And, since renting the entire lounge was a necessity for maintaining privacy and avoiding awkward glares, it turned out to be a rather expensive affair,” said another organiser, who did not wish to be named.
The Delhi High Court’s ruling on Section 377 on July 2 last year, however, changed all that.
Not only did it effectively decriminalise homosexuality, it also led to much wider social acceptance of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.
And, for the gay partygoer, it signalled the beginning of a large, vibrant and much more open party scene.
Agreeing that the days of secret parties are firmly past them, Vivek Raj Anand, CEO Humsafar Trust, said, “The change is evident. Owing to wider social acceptance, more and more people are coming out of the closet.”
“The number of parties has gone up staggeringly and, from a time when parties were kept a secret and locations were revealed on a need-to-know basis, we seem to be headed to a time when gay parties will be advertised in newspapers,” he added.
In the past three-odd months, two new groups — Whitenights, and the rather provocatively titled D**K — have been added to the long list of gay party organisers, which include the popular Gay Bombay, Salvation Star and L-Lounge. Party details are now published openly on the web.