India: The Next Big Gay Hot Spot?

Published Date Author: , June 1st, 2010

When Bryan Herb steps into stores on his trips to India, he says, shopkeepers almost always ask whether he is looking for a souvenir for the woman in his life. A ring for his girlfriend, perhaps? What about a beautiful pink scarf for his wife?

Keith Bedford for The International Herald Tribune
Sanjay Malhotra’s travel agency, IndjaPink, caters to a gay clientele.
“Every single time this happens, I toy with the idea of saying, ‘I have a boyfriend, not a girlfriend.'” said Mr. Herb, co-owner of Chicago-based Zoom Vacations, which caters to gay tourists. “But I don’t.”

Homosexuality has long been a hidden facet of Indian life and, until recently, an illegal one. But change is afoot. A Delhi High Court ruling last year decriminalized same-sex intercourse, and sensitivity toward gay people and bisexuals is growing in major cities like Mumbai and New Delhi. The Hindustan Times, one of the country’s largest English-language newspapers, recently began a campaign called, “It is time to open our minds,” encouraging Indians to rethink social issues, including equal rights for gay people.

Full Story from the NY Times

Click here for gay travel resources in India.

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