On Sept 5, 2016 Scroll.in reported: LGBT rights groups in India share stories of queer women who have left home or taken drastic steps because they did not find acceptance.
On Wednesday, the story of two women from Mumbai, who were said to be in a relationship and attempted suicide after they were forbidden from seeing each other, grabbed headlines. While one of them died, the other survived after she was rushed to the hospital.
On the morning of August 27, Aditi*, a resident of Chunnabhatti in Mumbai hung herself from the ceiling after hearing that her neighbour, Sheetal* had consumed phenyl (a disinfectant) in an attempt to kill herself. The previous day, the two had been spotted by one of their relatives and Sheetal’s father, on finding this out, forbade her from seeing Aditi, the police said. He also sought the help of a local political worker who allegedly scolded both the girls.
Heartbroken, both girls attempted suicide. But while Sheetal was taken to the hospital and survived, Aditi was found dead. The police have arrested Sheetal’s father and booked him for abetment to suicide and criminal intimidation. The political worker, Mahendra Nakte, who has been booked under the same charges, is on the run.
The police are yet to confirm the survivor’s age. “The matter is very sensitive,” said Sunil Bhosale, senior police inspector of Chunabhatti police station. “The investigation is on.”
Stories like that of Aditi and Sheetal are far from the exception – instances of young men and women in same-sex relationships being harassed by their parents, communities and the police are alarmingly common.