Earlier this month, the LGBTQ community celebrated as India’s supreme court overturned a colonial-era law that criminalised gay sex in the country.
Section 377 of the Indian penal code had been imposed on Indian citizens since British rule, and it penalised intercourse “against the order of nature” with a sentence of life imprisonment.
Following the scrapping of Section 377, Gaysians and Dishoom have teamed up to host a special fundraiser party to mark the historic moment.
Gaysians is a network of LGBTQ charities and activists supporting the South Asian community in the UK, while Dishoom is a popular restaurant group in London.
The party will include performances and talks from the British Asian LGBTQ community, and will take place at Protein Studios on 27 September.
“The scrapping of Section 377 has a huge impact on Indians all over the world,” said Reeta Loi, CEO of Gaysians. “For generations we’ve received much of our cultural content from Bollywood.
“With a lack of LGBT+ characters in films and out role models in wider society, it’s no wonder that studies and our first-hand experiences show that British Asians are more socially conservative than the general population, especially when it comes to homosexuality.
— Anna Isaac (@anna_isaac) September 6, 2018
“We’re excited to team up with Dishoom to put on this event to create an inclusive and safe space for LGBT+ South Asians and our allies to celebrate a huge moment in LGBT+ history together.”
Shamil Thakrar, co-founder of Dishoom, added: “It’s always been massively important to us that Dishoom is a place where everyone is welcomed with warmth, and where our differences should not only be tolerated, but celebrated.
“We were overjoyed by the Supreme Court’s long-overdue decision to scrap Section 377, and had a natural urge to bring people together to celebrate! All are welcome at 377Scrapped.”
Proceeds from ticket sales for the event will be split between Sappho for Equality, an organisation based in Kolkata, India that is working for the rights of lesbians, bisexual women, and trans men in Eastern India, and SAATHII, a charity with offices across India that envisions universal access to rights, health, legal and social services for communities marginalised on account of HIV status, gender and/or sexuality.
What’s more, Natco have also pledged to match a donation for every pound raised in the UK.
For more information and to buy tickets for the Dishoom x Gaysians 377 Scrapped Fundraiser Party, you can visit the official event page here.