The LGBTQ rights have been a debatable issue in our country. People tend to ignore and not talk about it. The two colleges in Kolkata which have seen various protests in the past few months organised a seminar which could give a deep insight into challenges faced by the members of the LGBTQ community. On one hand Presidency University's socio-cultural forum Ispat conducted a three-day long gender equality fair to focus on the issues of the LGBTQ, that is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer community in different fields like health, jobs, and personal hygiene and on the other hand Jadavpur University screened a documentary followed by a panel discussion on how members of the transgender community face a "social boycott" even at health clinics and hospitals.
"The members of the LGBTQ community are more visible on our campuses now more than ever but they still remain a gender-identity minority. The primary objective of our gender mela was to develop a more liberal and inclusive atmosphere for them inside the campus," said Alokaparna Mukherjee, a postgraduate student and secretary of Ispat to the Times of India.
We live in a society where LGBTQ upliftment is quite necessary. The pain they go through and the things they have to bear are quite drastic. If we will educate the youth to be considerate towards them, things can change for the better. This three-day long event that begun on Monday included the screening of a documentary, a street play and a panel discussion on the health issues of the members of the community. All the members of many transgender groups presented cultural programmes and street play.
"The issues of a vast section which belongs to the LGBTQ community are missing from the common discourse today. For example, several campuses in the city do not have a gender neutral toilet. If such a basic issue is not addressed it will be very difficult to attract more transgenders and other members of the community to mainstream educational institutions," said Mukherjee.