Funnily, the city of love, Dehradun, is believed to have a very conservative mindset when it comes to LGBTQIA+ community. Although the name city of love is given because of the picturesque landscape, rich cultural heritage and very vibrant friendly people ; and not because of any love stories. But don’t you think that the name isn’t justified if the city doesn’t welcome the love of all kinds in all its various shapes and colours? The city had its first pride parade in 2017; not only this was the first for Dehradun but it was also the first for Uttarakhand.
It is very annoying that a Dehradun which is the capital of Uttarakhand( also known as Devbhoomi, one of the favourite places of Lord Vishnu on Earth) has such a conservative thinking that it has only one known LGBTQIA+ place i.e. queercollectivedehradun .(P.S. Please let me know in the comment section if you know about more hangout places there.) Lord Vishnu who is believed to be the messenger of love in their different incarnations and Lord Shiva who has an incarnation (Ardhanarishvara) whom the transgenders worship, give this place the holy significance it is known for. What disturbs me is the fact that the worshippers don’t have the full knowledge of scriptures and the stories of the Gods that they worship. But let’s hope that with the renewed understanding of scriptures, people will understand that love in its all forms is pure and should be accepted.
If you are from or planning to visit Dehradun, you should get in touch with queercollectivedehradun , they organise the offline and online meet-ups and also the pride march. There is also one more place where you can meet LGBTQIA+ folks and allies who understand the journey of being a queer person, with whom you can have personal and professional conversations; the place being FirstContact.LGBT a virtual space where you can find like minded people; interact and make a bond with them. The scenario of acceptance for LGBTQIA+ community is improving all over the country so let us hope that after the next pride parade in Dehradun, the community receives a more welcoming gesture.