We often talk about education being the first step in removing any sort of prejudice from the society. Many believe that proper education is going to help the Indian society get rid of banal practices. All of these beliefs seem to have been debunked in this open letter onThe News Minute by a queer student who was harassed during his time at an IIT .
Here are a few excerpts from the letter that’ll make you hang your head in shame:
My four years on campus only left me with memories of hurt: scars to last a lifetime. The guy who scrawled “Jessy Jessy, man with pussy” on my jacket with a permanent marker. The one who forcibly kissed me in public, and told everyone I deserved it because I was gay. The one who sent sexually explicit images of same-sex activity on the Yahoo email list of wing mates, captioned, “This is how Arvind has sex.”
If just the bigotry wasn’t awful enough, we’d like to remind you that these students then go on to become industry leaders. This is why the Indian society has a long way to go before we can truly become a peaceful country with equal rights for everyone.
“The next day, one guy replied to the group, “Arvind, you, homo b*****d, you should have said this before. I spent nights in your room without knowing this during college”. Though some classmates of mine quickly slammed him even before I checked that email, it left me wondering how men like these managed to lead hundreds of corporate teams across the globe. It also made me wonder: how did I survive my four years in campus surrounded by such insensitivity? I used to attend classes regularly and take good notes. This placed me in demand come exam time, when my peers would gather around me for group study and to access my notes. Was it these moments of feeling worthy and useful that helped me get through my otherwise depressing campus life? And should a queer person have to put in that extra effort or possess otherwise desirable qualities, in order to be treated with respect?”
You can read the complete open letter here.