The year 2019 began with a series of moments – some to rejoice at, and some to resent. While some countries are taking a leap forward in granting the LGBT+ community their rights, some are taking a step backwards, hence, the world is witnessing a momentous change with regards to the LGBT+ community, each causing numerous ripple effects. From Taiwan legalising same-sex marriages to the backlash faced by penal laws against LGBT+ rights in Brunei and Kenya, never has there been such international political and social consolidation for the cause of the community. In the light of such events, this issue of Maya stands as a testament to the consolidation reflecting a changing socio-political climate towards LGBT issues currently being witnessed in India. The issue makes the voices of those shunned, heard; those stories purged, published, and those issues quelled, raised. With increasing queer representation in movies, television, media and the changing attitudes in politics and society, this issue aims not to be complacent but remain committed to challenging adversity by raising awareness towards issues, advocating for rights, and countering stereotypes. We have witnessed crucial events in the development of queer rights, including the coming out of India’s first lesbian athlete, the rejection of the controversial Transgender Bill, and the recent Karnataka High Court judgement directing state education authorities and institutions to allow students to identify themselves as the third gender. Despite such achievements, we still exist at a time when the queer community faces stigma and discrimination in society. We are far from harnessing the true potential of the Constitution to further our causes and concerns, but that does not imply that the future is grim, or that we must lose hope. As we take a step forward, anxious of the unknown, just remember that this time around, we’re not alone.
[This post has been contributed by our Content Editor, Kshitij Dua. He recently graduated from Jindal Global Law School, Sonipat.]