The Myntra Girls: Let’s Do Some Straight Talking

Myntra’s ‘The Visit’ has become India’s first ad showing a lesbian couple preparing themselves to meet the parents, a yet again appreciable ad by Ogilvy & Mather. The ad shows two women in a live-in relationship romancing and getting ready for the day, talking all like any other couple anxious couple about to meet and confront their parents about their relationship. And what is wrong with that?

Though I found the idea as a gimmick like any other ad, since, the whole idea of an advertisement is to advertisement the damn product (Myntra’s Amouk store for ethnic wear). And I hardly got to know anything about the product or clothes. Honestly, I won’t be able to recognize that this is an ethnic apparel promotion if I only saw the video as anonymous. My mother saw the ad and asked me how I view lesbian couples; apparently “in HD quality” wasn’t the answer.

But since Myntra has brought forward a crucial matter, there are certain questions an ad cannot answer and certain issues an ad cannot address. Let us take a moment to ask and discuss them.

There are millions of people that belong to the LGBT community in India at this moment, rather they were present always but coming into light recently. One’s sexual orientation is implicit to one’s happiness. These people are just two consenting adults getting into a relationship. Why does our country still hold on to an age-old parameter of morality that doesn’t exist and probably never did? What are we achieving by keeping Section 377? Does it do anything besides creating situations where members of the LGBT community are routinely harassed, blackmailed and abused?

india-homosexualityWhat? What did you say? Homosexuality is unnatural and against your TRADITION? Say it again after this. This law was introduced during British rule in 1860. So your tradition is what was set up by British 155 years back and now you are opposing homosexuality on the grounds that it is a foreign concept? Colonial hangover much?

It’s not just the LGBT community that pays the price of this drunken state, but everyone else who are dragged into these marriages suffer too. Remember the 31-year old AIIMS doctor who committed suicide because her husband was gay? Or the wife of a banker who had a massive heart attack at 35 when she found out that she was in a marriage with a gay man. There are so many people who spent and are still spending their lives in compromise and despair because their partners don’t want to be intimate with them or are not capable of being in love with them.

This is our incredible India where two people can’t get married because they belong to the same gender. But will blindfold their brain when a priest tells them that they have to marry a tree because of some Mangalik hoola-hoo.

An HIV-AIDS prevention organization, The NAZ Foundation, appealed to have Section 377 reformed but the case was rejected on grounds that “public morality” should “prevail over the exercise of any private right”.

The most disappointing part is that even the younger generation is not very supportive. For them the idea of modernization is to work in some MNC, experience the riches, travel across the world and drink at bars. Sexuality is only one very small aspect of life. It shouldn’t define who you are. That is exactly the point. Why do these people have to fight to prove that they are “not freaks but completely normal”.

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