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The Middle East and Asia: South Asia: Part 2 of 6: Internet Links - B
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Note: Changes / Additions to this resource will initially be made on - This Web Page - and here about six months later.

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Full Text Papers!  - - AsiaPacifiQueer 3
Sexualities, Genders, And Rights in Asia: An International Conference of Asian Queer Studies
Bangkok, Thailand, July 8-10, 2005
Closing date for submitting paper and panel proposals: October 31, 2004
Part 1: Issues for People of Colour in some Western Countries. - Part 2: Latin America & Africa.

Part 3: Section Index

Section 3B - South Asia (This Page ): - South Asia - Web Resources - Bibliographies - Books: - India - Films -- Bangladesh -- Nepal -- Sri Lanka -- Pakistan -- Bhutan -- Maldives -- General Asian Resources -- General International Resources.

Note: Full Text Documents are Located on Another Web Page.

Section 3C - Northeast Asia: - China - History - Films - Web Resources. -- Hong Kong - Films - Web Resources. -- Taiwan  - Films - Web Resources. -- Tibet -- Mongolia -- South Korea - Web Resources. -- Japan - History  - Films - Web Resources - Books.

Section 3D - Southeast Asia / Pacific Islands: - Vietnam - Web Resources - Books. -- Thailand - Web Resources - Books. -- Singapore - Web Resources - Books. -- Malaysia - Web Resources - Books. -- Philippines - Web Resources - Books. -- Indonesia -- East Timor -- Laos -- Burma -- Brunei -- Guam -- Nauru -- General Asian Resources.

Section 3A - Middle East to Central Asia: - Middle East / Eastern Mediterranean Region: - Iran -- Israel -- Palestine -- Lebanon -- Jordan -- Saudi Arabia -- Kuwait -- Iraq -- Bahrain-- Oman -- Yemen -- Syria -- Egypt -- Algeria-- Morocco -- Tunesia -- Turkey -- Cyprus -- General International Resources. -- Afghanistan -- Kazakhstan -- Kyrgyzstan -- Uzbekistan -- Turkmenistan -- Tajikistan.

Amnesty International: Hong Kong: LGBT Group
LGBT Group: Page Header...

The higher you build your barriers
The taller I become
The further you take my rights away
The faster I will run
You can deny me
You can decide to turn your face away
No matter 'cause there's
 Something inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Though you're doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone... oh no
There's something inside so strong
Something inside so strong"
~~ extracted lyrics of ''Something Inside So Strong'' by Labi Siffre on "So Strong" ~~
© 1998 China Records Ltd.

Sexuality Policy Watch (2008): Position Paper on the Language of “Sexual Minorities” and the Politics of Identity.


SOUTH ASIA: - Friendship Walk Celebrates India's First Gay Pride Event. - Bisexuality in South Asian Communities.Re: Hindu Homosexuality. - Cultural constructions of male sexualities in India: Word Download. (Alternate Link) (PDF Download) (Some citations from the paper: old version. New version) (Links to this paper and related papers) - A problem in Addressing AIDS Issues: the probable minority status of gay identified  males in South Asia's world of male homosexuality. - Gays in India closeted by caste and class. - Is it time for a new attitude towards homosexuality in South Asia?:  Homosexuality is still illegal in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. - Indian Gays Step Out: South Asian gays emerge to challenge the staid conventions of the community. (Alternate Link) - Media coverage of double murder angers India’s gay community. - A Different Love: Mumbai has an active homosexual scene. Surya investigates their challenges and tribulations. - Dissecting the Indian Male.

Social taboos pressure lesbian love: Throughout South Asia, homosexuality has been a taboo subject. There are signs in some areas that gay people are now becoming more open - but that is not always the case. In the latest in a series of articles from the region, Sutapa Mukerjee looks at a problematic lesbian relationship in Allahabad, India. - Lesbians vs. Gays vs. Hinduism vs. Modernity- "Khush-space" is South Asian lesbigay space. - Human rights violations against sexuality minorities in India (PDF Download). - Anger at 'shameful' India gay law. - Eyes Wide Shut: Violence, stigma and social exclusion: MSM, HIV and social justice in South Asia (Word Download). - Homosexuality in India, where tradition still rules: India's erstwhile colonial laws outlawing homosexuality are out of touch with a changing society, Chinmayee Manjunath discovers... Current attitudes towards homosexuality, in part go back to 1860, when India was under British rule. It was then that the infamous Section 377 was introduced into the Indian Penal Code. Section 377 discriminates persons on the basis of their sexual orientation, and asserts that the offence is "sodomy." Section 377 was put into place for all the British colonies including, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan, but has since been repealed in England, the rule's country of origin... - The gay community in Bangalore has emerged out of the closet. - Cómo es la Vida de un Homosexual en la India Urbana?

South Asia’s Homosexual Problem (Theater Review): Anyone who has been to India can attest to the conspicuousness of same-sex couples holding hands in public, walking with arms and shoulders locked in intimate embrace. Had the same phenomenon been witnessed in Chelsea or P-Town, we would have no doubt that they are gay. These Indian dostis, however, are not gay. They simply invoke more physical intimacy during their daily interactions of friendship. And the silent minority of men and women who do fall in love with sweethearts of the same sex also do not consider themselves to be gay in our culturally specific sense of the term: they are men who love men, and women who love women. Paul Knox emphasizes this distinction in Gehri Dosti: Five Short Plays With a South Asian Bent. His work sheds light on the complexity -- and the contextual niceties -- of the pain encountered by same-sex lovers in the face of persecution and intolerance. Because homosexuality in India is culturally and religiously offensive to the heterosexual mainstream, LBGTQs are rendered invisible and nonexistent, or else considered a subversive cultural import from the West...Composed of five widely divergent vignettes, Gehri Dosti explores a series of unconventional relationships fraught with misunderstandings and failures... Knox’s plays have a power to transport the audience into the raw, private, even secretive, and plaintive reality of his characters. The audience is allowed to live vicariously through them, and we privately watch from one end of the room as the actors publicly writhe naked under sheets or lose themselves in yoga meditation..

Males who have sex with males in South Asia a kothi framework (Word Download) (PDF Download: page 53-63) It is often asked "how many MSM are there in Bangladesh? or India?", usually by Western donors, consultants, and representatives of many AIDS NGOs. The question appears to be reasonable on the surface, but it actually represents a misconception in terms of the social construction of MSM behaviours and identities in the region. The way the question is phrased generates a conception of MSM as an exclusive group, an identity rather than a behaviour. But, evenmore contentiously, the question itself cannot be properly answered with any adequate response or accuracy. In this context we should really be talking about male to male sexual behaviours rather than specifically men who have sex with men... From the work that Naz Foundation International has done in the region in this arena, it has been found that the issue of MSM is complex, diverse and often counter-intuitive. - Masculinities in India: Flash Presentation & Movie

Muslim Hijras in India and Pakistan. - De Hijras: Moslim hijras in India en Pakistan. - Sexual minorities: Samabhavana Society. - India’s wings of desire. - Hijras of india: paradox and surrogate families. - Hijras, India's Thrid Gender. - The Hijras of Pakistan. - Blurring the gender lines in Bangladesh. - Stop Police Brutality Against Hijras and Kothis in Bangalore! - Hijras: Who We Are  by Meena Balaji and other Eunuchs as told to Ruth Lor Malloy. - The Works on Hijra in Indian Sub-Continent. - The Rise of Eunuchs in Hindi Films. - Film Reviews: "Bombay Eunuch" - The Hijra: Adnan Hossain will conduct a Presentation for our Conference based on his writings below. He  hopes to have his Book Completed and Published by the Conference. - The Hijras of India: Resources. - Wikipedia: Hijra. - glbtq: Hijra. - Indopedia; Hijra

NAZ Foundation International: Full Text Documents / Reports / Essays / Papers: The following titles may or may not be available for download: Actions For Life - Developing MSM Sexual Health Services. - Community Mobilising. - Developing A Community-Based Sexual Health Service for MSM. - The Kothi Framework. - Anal Sex and Anal STD's. - Female Partners of MSM. - Social Justice, Human Rights and MSM. - Masculinities and Kothi Framework in South Asia. - Know Your Rights - India. - MSM And Rights Based Approach. -   Actions For Life and developing MSM sexual health services. - The politics of penetration. - Sexuality and sexual health in South Asia. - Cultural constructions of male sexualities in India. - Under the Blanket - bisexualities and AIDS in India. - Culture. religion and human rights. - Culture, sexualities and identities. - Through a window darkly: Males selling sex in other males in India and Bangladesh. - Males who have sex with males in India and Bangladesh. - The risks of categorisation. - There are no heterosexuals in India - only married men and men who will get married. - Behaviour and identity. - Socio-cultural constructions of male sexual behaviours in South Asia. - Kothis, gays and (other) MSM. - Human rights and sexual citizenship. - Between the covers. - The politics of biology. - Male to male sexual behaviours presentation. - Human Rights study in Bangladesh on MSM. - Masculinities, sexualities and HIV/AIDS. - What ís in a name?. - Exporting Identity. - Islam and same-sex. - MSM and HIV/AIDS: A South Asian Experience. - NFI- Model for an MSM intervention. Note: Excerpts and Links to many of these Documents are located in Male Homosexuality / Homosexualities In India / South Asia: Part 1, 2, 3.  Additional Documents are referenced - with links - in the India, Bangladeh, and Pakistan sections of this web page.

Addressing Impediments to HIV/AIDS Prevention, Care and Support for MSM in South Asia (Shivananda Khan, Naz Foundation International) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "Issues of HIV risk for males who have sex with males (MSM) is not only about actual behaviour but also the environment in which these behaviours take place. Over 12 situational assessments accessing 2400 (MSM) conducted in South Asia, two studies conducted in Bangladesh and India on impediments to sexual health promotion among MSM, and regular activities reports from partner projects since 1997. The primary framework of male-to-male sex in South Asia appears to be based on gendered identities and sex roles. As a feminised male the penetrated partner is highly stigmatised, living in an environment of social exclusion and violence which greatly increases their vulnerability and risk to HIV, while the penetrating partner is seen as a normative male usually without a sexual identity and from the general male population. Socialising networks are only kothi-based. Attacks and sexual violence against kothis are common, while illegality, and stigma and discrimination based on genderphobia, create denial and invisibility as well generate social exclusion from HIV/AIDS services. Such a disempowering environment generates high risk behaviours which are difficult to address. Unless masculinity is addressed, sexual responsibility strongly advocated, and appropriate and confidential HIV/AIDS services are available that are non-discriminatory, non-judgmental and readily accessible, where anal sex is mainstreamed as a general male sexual health concern, along with amendments to laws and policies, effective risk reduction strategies among MSM cannot be sustained."

Translating AIDS awareness messages into South Asian contexts - some comments on the sexual words exercise: ...Our task was to try to establish simple and clear ways in Nepali of expressing both the technical and the sexual vocabulary related to AIDS prevention. The discussions in this group have informed the description and the analysis I present here. - Community Groups Step in Where the Indian Government Fears to Tread.  - India Currents:  Coming Out, Coming Home?  Alternative sexuality out of the closet and in the community by Sandip Roy-Chowdhury (Related: South Asian LGBT Community Takes the Cover of India Currents).

Men, Males and MSM: The first of these is the fact that many of the men who have sex with other men are not men. Physically mature fourteen-, fifteen-, sixteen-year old boys and older have sex with other boys the same age and / or with older men, sometimes voluntarily, sometimes under coercion.  (So do boys who have not yet reached the age of puberty, but that is the different issue of child abuse.) To ensure that prevention programmes reach these younger men, a number of groups, most notably in South Asia, have dropped the phrase men who have sex with men in order to refer to “males who have sex with males”. My head sympathises, but my heart screams. For me “male” is dehumanising and offensive, as it places us on a level with animals. (While the physicality of the sexual act is something we have in common with animals, our minds usually bring a dimension to sexuality that animals lack.) I would prefer to talk about "men and boys who have sex with men and boys", but I recognise the phrase is both cumbersome and subject to misinterpretation (eg some may think it includes pre-pubescent boys or others use it referring only to men and boys who have sex with both men and boys etc etc). I usually compromise by using “men who have sex with men” and prefacing any article or speech with the rider that by men I include sexually mature boys, but the rider isn’t always heard and the viewpoint isn’t shared by everyone...

For Straights Only: " In her 22-minute documentary, For Straights Only, Atlanta based filmmaker Vismita Gupta-Smith tells the story of an almost invisible minority, South Asian gays and lesbians. Told from the perspective of a straight sister about her gay brother, this film explores the prejudices faced by the gay South Asian community (India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal). Interviews with other gay and lesbian South Asians expose the deep-seated denial of homosexuality within this community and the dismissal of the gay sexual orientation as a "western vice". Through the film, Vismita points out the irony of such dismissal, as she explains that one of this culture's most treasured ancient texts, the Kamasutra, actually celebrates homosexuality...The most gratifying outcome of this film, Vismita insists; is the e-mails she receive from South Asian gays and lesbians living as far as Philippines, Indonesia, The Netherlands, UK, and Australia asking for the film. Many Indians in the USA  wanted to use the film to sensitize their families to the issue before they come out to them."

A Situational Analysis of Child Sex Tourism in India (PDF Download).

Male Brothels (Required Research): - Escape from Mumbai: Young Nepali tells how he was forced into 'sexual slavery' in India and life in a brothel. - A dangerous trade: The Asian sex industry is booming, and with it the AIDS epidemic. - Developing a sexual health response to the needs of males who have sex with males in Dhaka, Bangladesh (PDF Download): A reliable report indicates that there are several male brothels in Dhaka. These are primarily guest houses in certain selected areas of Dhaka.

Male Brothel History: Brief Biography of Sir Richard Burton:  As an intelligence officer assigned to go undercover in the souks and bazaars of the Sindh, Burton perfected his language ability and disguises and brought information back to his commanding officer, the renowned Sir Charles Napier. One assignment required him to investigate male brothels, where he reported that many of the customers were British officers. His report was hushed up and he came under close scrutiny after Napier was dispatched from India. Ill with cholera and under the cloud of his report, he returned home, at the age of 29. - Sex, secrecy and shamefulness (PDF Download): There exists a great deal of male and female homosexual erotica in the Mughal period, which indicates a wide-spread acknowledgement of desire. Muslim rulers of India often maintained youthful male lovers, and male brothels flourished in many Indian cities.

First International Conference of Asian Queer Studies (2005): Papers available for download. - The 2005 Conference Abstracts: Many of these possible papers were either not presented or not made avaible as full text papers (PDF Download) (Alternate Link). - Titles for abstracts of these paper: related to South Asia: - Addressing Impediments to HIV/AIDS Prevention, Care and Support for MSM in South Asia (Shivananda Khan, Naz Foundation International).  

South Asian Resource Links: - Links to South Asian Resources. - Gay Delhi. - Gaysia. - The Khush page: Organizations - Literature - Cinema - Who's Who - News - Links. - India (and South Asia related) Sexual Minorities Resources Pages- Between the Lines: Negotiating South Asian LBG Identities. - Hijra Resources. Khush, DC: Resources. - - SalgaNY: World Resoiurces..  

South Asian Books / Bibliographies: - Gay Bombay Home Page: Book/Film Review Index. -  Ohio State University Library's GLB  Book list (China, Japan, New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and other Asia and Pacific countries.) - Gay Asian Literature: Non Fiction. - Gay Asian Literature: Anthologies. - Asian homosexuality bibliography. - Gay Asian Literature. - Gay/Lesbian SA Literature. - Books by and for South Asian women. - Bibliography of materials on South Asian Gay, Lesbian, Concerns. -'s South Asia Gay/Lesbian Books. - Books related to gay, bi, lesbian, transgender Asian/Pacific people. - GLBTQ: South Asian Literatures. - Literature of South Asia and the Indian diaspora. - Bibliography of Materials on South Asian Gay, Lesbian Concerns. - Men Who Have Sex With Men in India: An Annotated Bibliography.

Books: - A Lotus of Another Color: An Unfolding of the South Asian Gay and Lesbian Experience - 1993 - edited by Rakesh Ratti. - Love in a Different Climate:  The Meaning of Men who have Sex with Men in India - 1999 - by Jeremy Seabrook (Review) (Review) (Review, Must Scroll) (8 Sample Pages) (Article by Author: It's what you do: Most of the men who have sex with men in the South probably don’t identify themselves as ‘gay’ or ‘bisexual’. Jeremy Seabrook explains why it’s vital to recognize this. - Queering India: Same-Sex Love And Eroticism In Indian Culture And Society - 2002 - by Ruth Vanita (Amazon) (Interview with author). - Because I Have a Voice: Queer Politics in India - 2006 - edited by Arvind Narrain and Gautam Bhan (Review) (Review)  (Review).

Books: - Sex, Longing & Not Belonging: A Gay Muslim's Quest for Love & Meaning - 1997 - by Badruddin Khan (Amazon). - Ode to Lata  (a novel) - 2002 - by Ghalib Shiraz Dhalla (Review). - Different Rainbows: Same-Sex Sexualities and Popular Movements in the Third World - 2000 - edited by Peter Drucker (7 Sample Pages) (Review: PDF Download) (Table of Contents). Contains: "‘No silence please, we’re Indians!" (P. 157-78) "Sherry Joseph and Pawan Dhall, both activists in India, discuss the movement and the problems it faces in that country." - Made in India: Decolonizations, Queer Sexualities, Trans/national Projects - 2004 - by Suparna Bhaskaran. - Impossible Desires: Queer Diasporas and South Asian Public Cultures - 2005 - by Gayatri Gopinath. - With Respect to Sex: Negotiating Hijra Identity in South India - 2005 - by Gayatri Reddy (Abstract/Contents) (Review) (Review). 

Books: - Same Sex Love in India: Readings from Literature and History - edited by Ruth Vanita and Saleem Kidwai - NY: St Martin's 2000; Delhi, Macmillan, 2002. (Review by Ashok Row Kavi.) (Review) (Review) (Review) (Author Interview) (Author Interview) (Related Information) - Sakhiyani: Lesbian Desire In Ancient And Modern India by Thandani, Giti and Thadani, Giti (Review). (Interview with Thandani) (Amazon). - Love and Lust: An Anthology of Erotic Literature from Ancient and Medieval India - 2004 - edited by Pavan K. Varma and Sandhya Mulchandan (Review: Must Register)..

Books: - The Invisibles: a tale of the eunuchs of India - 1996 - by  Zia Jaffrey (Related Web Site) (Review). - Asian Homosexuality - 1992 - edited by Wayne R. Dynes and Stephen Donaldson (Table of Contents). Contains: "The Hijras of India: A Preliminary Report," 135-152 & "Social Profile of Homosexuals in an Indian Male Prison," 237-337. - The Man Who Was a Woman and Other Queer Tales of Hindu Lore - 2001 - by Devdutt Pattanaik (Compiler) - Interview with Author: Mythologist from Mumbai: Devdutt Pattanaik queers Hindu Lore. - Related Informatio at Haworth Press: PDF Access to Excerpt. - Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik's homepage. Review. - Excerpts.

Books: - Facing the Mirror: Lesbian Writing from India - 1999 - edited by Ashwini Sukthankar (Review) - Yaraana: Gay Writing from India - 1999 - edited by Hoshang Merchant (Review) (Review) - Funny Boy - 1994 - by Shyam Selvadurai (9 Sample Pages) (Review) - I am often asked about how my books are received in Sri Lanka. This review helps answer that question. Related Paper: "Writing Sri Lanka, Reading Resistance: Shyam Selvadurai’s Funny Boy and A. Sivanandan’s when Memory Dies" [Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 39(1), 2004: 5-18.]

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

New Support Group Established to Help Lesbians in India
(The Journey: Director Ligy J Pullappally, a film-maker and a lawyer
specialising in women’s rights, created the film to help lower the number
of lesbian suicides in Kerala in the Southern region of India.)

“Women activists alarmed by the rising incidence of suicides among lesbians have formed Sahayathrika, an advocacy group that provides support and counselling to troubled lesbians in Thiruvananthapuram, India. Sahayathrika was created by a group of women activists who got alarmed by the increasing number of suicides in Kerala committed by women who love women. At least 21 suicide cases of women identified as lesbian have been reported over the last five years. Most of these women are from the lower middle class. Lesbians who are frustrated that they are unable to lead the lives that they want because of societal pressures often commit these suicides. Fear of social stigma is always the enemy of these women, along with the condemnation of their family if their sexual orientation was revealed. In Indian society, homosexuality is still considered as a deviant behaviour, and is dismissed as a sexual delinquency or a stage in a woman's life, which she will eventually "pass" or "get over it." Sahayathrika workers fear that more suicides will follow if no one will reach out to these troubled women… In spite of these setbacks, lesbians have been coming out of hiding and are reaching out to the group. Sahayathrika workers are happy that slowly, their efforts are gaining positive results - 25 lesbians have contacted them since the group was formed in October 2002…”

INDIA: - Gay men find refuge on the Net: The Internet is revolutionizing the lives of gay men in India... - Gay club running on Net unearthed: The Lucknow police on Wednesday arrested four men, including an assistant accountant of the State Administrative Tribunal, on charges of running a 'gay club' on Internet and indulging in 'unnatural' sex in public places... - UNAIDS cocnerned over arrests of men who have sex woith men in India (PDF Download). - India's law criminalizing homosexuality is undermining the fight against HIV/AIDS. - Anger at 'shameful' India gay law. - Same-Sex Love in India: Open Letters against Section 377. - India's young people inclined to scrap gay ban. - India's ”Queerfest” targets anti-gay law, prejudice. - India revises HIV figures downward by half. - India HIV/AIDS Prevention Goes Bollywood: Mira Nair’s latest film project takes the message to Indian cinema halls. - Gay Man in India Beheaded.

Homegrown Homosexuality: Queering India  (PDF Download). - Wikipedia: Homosexuality in India. - A World History of Homosexuality (U3A course SBS19-2006): Making Mischief and a Past Reclaimed, Homosexuality in India (PDF Download). - Indian Prince Disowned After Coming Out. - Maharaja's son is disowned after coming out as gay. - India's first openly gay club. - Survey: Indian Youths Among The Happiest: India Today: Ac Nielsen-Org-Marg did a survey of men in the age group between 16-25.  A sample of 2559 males across 11 cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Patna, Ludhiana, Kolkata and Chennai were surveyed... 46% single males have had sex, 10% higher than the 2004 survey.  37% single young men have had a homosexual experience, compared to 31% in 2004.  63% single men expect the woman they marry to be a virgin, 10% lower than 2004.  49% young men have had sex with sex worker. - Almost 40% Of Indian Men Have Had Gay Sex. - Sexual practices other than peno-vaginal sex: perceptions and ptactices in an urban comunity (PDF Download) (Full Text): 59.7% of married men reported homosexual experience and 39.3% of married males considered homosexual behavior to be a normal part of growing up.

The Indivisible: Indian queer activist Gautam Bhan on why sexuality rights need to be viewed in a different light: Three different people; three ways of looking at sexuality. But what are gay rights, queer rights, sexuality rights, or sexual rights? Are they simply the right to express and not be criminalized for same-sex desire; or are they the rights of same-sex desiring people, rights that seek to describe and understand all parts of their lives and not just their sexual preference? In parts of newly emerging sexuality movements in India there is today a shift in ways of articulating the politics of sexuality. This shift recognizes that the way sexuality is experienced by queer people cannot be understood if it is separated from gender, religion, language, region, caste and class...

Homosexuality And The Indian: In India, except for a few people belonging to the English-speaking elite in metropolitan centers, mostly in the higher echelons of advertising, fashion, design, fine and performing arts, men (and women) with same-sex-partners neither identify themselves as homosexuals nor admit their sexual preference, often even to themselves. Many men - some married - have had or continue to have sex with other men; but only a miniscule minority are willing to recognize themselves as homosexual. The assertion that there are hardly any homosexuals in India and yet there is considerable same-sex-involvement seems contradictory, yet simple to reconcile. Sex between men, especially among friends or within the family during adolescence and youth, is not regarded as sex, but masti, an exciting, erotic playfulness, with overtones of the mast elephant in heat. Outside male friendship, it is a way to satisfy an urgent bodily need or, for some, to make money. Sex, on the other hand, is the serious business of procreation within marriage. Almost all men who have sex with other men will get married even if many continue to have sex with men after marriage...  - Snippets from the Indian LGBT Movement.

Attitudes, and the law, keep India's gays quiet. - Coming Out: No more queer pressure, only gay abandon. This movement is gaining support, finds our correspondent. - Mais où sont les gays en Inde? - L’homosexualité dans la societé indienne. - 'Lesbians want space, not publicity'. - Same-sex South Asia. - Homosexuality in India, where tradition still rules. -  Where are the homosexuals? You don't have to look too far .... - Understanding the Lesbian:  What does it mean to be a lesbian in India? - Geographies of contagion: Hijras, Kothis, and the politics of sexual marginality in Hyderabad. - Prejudices... out of the closet. - Almost 40% Of Indian Men Have Had Gay Sex (Alternate Link).

India's gays ease open closet door. - India's gays see small improvement in cultural outlets (Alternate Link). - Still 'nay' to gays? - India’s Online Gays - Revolution, or Hi-Tech Closet? (Aternate Link) - The Hijras of India Research Guide. - A eunuch pioneers in India politics. - Being A Eunuch. - `We are no aliens'. - End psychiatric abuse against homosexuals in India. - Gays, lesbians walk for rights amidst onlookers' jeers. - First gay march for India on june 29, 2003. - India Lesbians Wed. - Gay in India: Activists brace for a long battle. - Out and Out Radical: New Directions for Progressive Organizing. - Criminal to be gay? - Between Queer Ethics and Sexual Morality. - Aliens in Lucknow: AIDS education workers in India's gay community are being targetted by police. Saleem Kidwai describes the bust of one leading agency.

A perspective from India: Homosexuality stands criminalized because of a mid 19th century colonial law. - Law versus practice: Homosexuality carries on regardless of Section 377 of the IPC. - India: Section 377: How natural is normal? - The Law and Homosexuality in India. - Human rights violations against sexuality minorities in India: PDF Download. - Gays in India and an Antiquated Law. -  With Homosexuality Illegal, Gays Suffer AIDS Silently. - Same-sex Love and Affection in the Spiritual World. - Indian lesbians demand decriminilisation of homosexuality. - All That Gays Want Is Equality. - India: Gays and Lesbians on the Road to Human Rights. - India court rejects gay petition. - Can eunuchs get insurance?

Special Issue: Combat Law : The Human Rights magazine, 2(4) Note: The Site permits only two of the following articlea to be read without a subscription: Marginalized sexualities and genders: -  Gender in the Construction of Nations (Women are central to the project of nation-making and yet are denied a voice in it. What then, about those who fall outside of this frame of the heterosexual family?) - Redefining oppressions, articulating rights: Shalini Mahajan on marginalised sexualities and genders in India. -  The Human Rights of an Unpeople (An overview of the laws, conditions and attitudes that deny‘hijras’ any political, civil or social rights.)  - Voicing the Invisible: ViolenceAgainst Lesbians in India (A study on the nature of violence faced by lesbian women in India conducted by Research Centre on Violence Against Women, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai). - Sexual Rights and Social Movements In India (PDF Download).

Special Issue: Combat Law : The Human Rights magazine, 2(4) Note: The Site permits only two of the following articlea to be read without a subscription: -  Human Rights and Sexual Orientation (On the international stage, attention is now being drawn to human rights abuses perpetrated on the basis of sexual orientation or expression). -  Complicating Gender: Rights of Transsexuals in India. -  Section 377: Weapon of Persecution. - Law And Discrimination Against Homosexuals. - Indian LGBT in the Time of Cholera (The need is integration of intellectual and activist LGBT work in India with the social struggles of the country rather than funded projects designed in the US.) - From Bits To Qbits (The intersection of feminist and queer politics will lead to newer understandings). - Acknowledging Our Desires. - HIV: A Lens on Sexuality. - Review of LGBT Publications.

Anti-sodomy Laws in India: Harassment & Socio-Cultural Aspects (Sachin Jain, Mumbai University) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "This paper delves into the roots of India's anti-sodomy laws full of vague and archaic terminologies. I have discussed social factors like patriarchy, the ebb of socialism and embrace of capitalist ways, satellite television, the internet, a booming economy, over a billion people, a breakdown of the joint family system, urban migration, Bollywood cinema the omnipresence of alternate gender identities like Hijras, Kotis etc. and the tenuous relationship they share with the modern gay movement. The paper enumerates the effects of anti-sodomy laws in India: exploitation, extortion, verbal harassment, the perception of gayism as a fancy western decadence, Recent issues like the peddling of pornography, MMS technologies in mobile phones, the cheap availability of spycams, the advent of adult television in India are discussed. Effects of criminalisation: invisiblisation, misinformation, condoning of and apathy to violence against queers, denial of access to safe sex information, hindrances in the provision of medical services etc. are considered. I describe the difficulties in obtaining redress, absence of a distinction between consensual and coercive sex, child abuse issues, the use of other lower-level laws are also used to harass queers, especially transgenders in India. The paper discusses the immediate advantages of decriminalization of homosexuality in the fields of health, law reform, social awareness, increased tolerance, acceptance, decreased harassment, hate, vulnerability, exploitation, violence, better HIV/AIDS prevention, registration and protection of NGOs, full expression of identity and potential. The paper ends with recommendations and advocacy to win LGBTrights in the 21st century in India." - India's literary elite call for anti-gay law to be scrapped

Gay Delhi: - Gay Delhi Stories - Coming-Out stories - DARPAN, meaning 'Aaina' is the Gay Mirror to the World _ Delhi's only gay magazine. (New site for Darpan: The Humrahi Magazine)  - Gay Delhi: City Guide. -‘If my daughter told me she was gay, my first reaction would be of shock.’ - Humrahi: An organization for Gay and Bisexual men based in New Delhi. - Gay couple hold Hindu wedding. - On the terrace: Bombay’s flamboyant gays find elaborate ways of surviving a hostile world. But what goes on inside their hearts and minds? And what hope is there of liberation? A short, mainly autobiographical, story by Dinyar Godrej. - Pro-Gay Movement Gathers Steam in India. -  Gay India: Many Faces, Secret Traditions and Bold New Times.

Gay in Hindu India: "India has always had the reputation of having a liberal climate and a free press, sometimes undeserved, but with the right-wing Hindu government all that is changing. I mean, before, you would look at what happened to people in Pakistan because of their sexual identities, people being burned or buried alive, and think it was like another world. But we're not so far from there now. I hate to say it, but that's the road we're heading down in India." - Homophobia within India. - India’s Sexual Minorities. - Gays protest in New Delhi. - Seventy years of Hindoo Holiday: Exploring today’s India with the help of a book written 70 years ago by a young homosexual man from England.  Homosexuality in India: Past and Present: PDF Download.

Exploring the possibility of a marriage of convenience with him/her for gay and lesbian individuals. - 'Homosexual, married and Indian' - No real alternatives for gay ‘couples’ (Must Scroll). - When gays marry lesbians. - BI-sexual men in India? (Forum) "The international survey has clearly reported that 1 in 10 males are having homosexual problem. They don't have to be gays, they are married having relationship with both men and women. That's straight acting men. It might be applicable in the western world, what about in India or south asia? South asians are more conservative. That's what I feel. Do you thing that many males in India/south asia are Bi-Sexual?"

India's Different Gay Divide: "If you are gay or bisexual, you know about these places. They are usually public toilets, parks or secluded lanes, and when one goes looking for sexual partners there, one tends to meet people from different socioeconomic backgrounds. You would come across servants and businessmen, so at least some interaction across the class would happen... Chandran works within tight parameters. The Indian police recently arrested two men in a "cruising area" in the northern city of Lucknow, and Chandran is concerned that cops in other cities might begin to bear down upon gay organizations." - India: The Deaths of Two Women in Love: "Dead bodies of 2 young women were found at the Satyamangalam forest area, Erode district. They had committed suicide as they could not live apart from each other and they had a homosexual love relationship. They wrote in their heartbreaking letter that they couldn't live apart from each other." - The Marginality of Liminality: Experiences of Sexualizing University Spaces in India (PDF Download). - Seeking Freedom: Indian lesbians are coming out of the closet in increasing numbers despite knowing that society frowns on alternative sexuality and considers them outcasts...

Closet Drama (Alternate Link): (Far Eastern Economic Review: Oct. 3, 2002) Caught between harsh laws and cultural conservativeness, Indian gays often lead lives of frightened secrecy. But now hopes are high they may be on the brink of a legal breakthrough... Tonight's underground party on the outskirts of New Delhi is one of the rare places where it is safe for Prafulla (who asked not to be identified by his real name) and his three friends to dress in drag... We noticed . . . that there was a lot of harassment . . . by goondas--that's professional hoodlums--as well as by the police," says Shaleen Rakesh of the Naz Foundation... Documented cases of harassment include not only extortion but also illegal detentions and physical and verbal abuse by police. Naz, which means "pride" in Hindi, also found that police and hoodlums were harassing their own outreach workers: In one case police even jailed workers from another organization for promoting so-called unnatural sex..." - Srila Prabhupada on the Third Sex: “I Do Not Know Exactly…” -

Male 'Homosexualities' In India / South Asia: (Part 2) Excerpts from - Khan, Shivananda (2001). Culture, sexualities, and identities: men who have sex with men in India. Journal of Homosexuality, 40(3/4), 99-115. & Asthana S, and Oostvogels R (2001). The social construction of male 'homosexuality' in India: implications for HIV transmission and prevention. Social Science & Medicine, 52: 707-21. - Transcript of CNN coverage on homosexuality in India. - Bisexuality: the sudden reveal. (By Raval, Sheela & Anshul Avijit. India Today, May 22 2000 issue.) - One in five Mumbai MSMs are HIV+. - Homosexuality in South Asia: Men and Masti

A eunuch pioneers in India politics: Lower Than the Untouchables, 'Hijras' Begin to Change Some Popular Prejudices: "For years after she was taken from her family by a gang of eunuchs, Ms. Nehru dwelled in a subculture of sexual outcasts who rank lower in India than the untouchables. They are notorious for crashing weddings, singing raunchy songs and dancing until paid to leave. But after her election to the municipal council in this city in northern India three years ago, Ms. Nehru has outshone her peers at getting water, sewer lines and roads for her district, a transformed slum." - Tritiya-Prakriti: People of the Third Sex. - Sexual behaviour in India with risk of HIV/AIDS transmission (PDF Download): In addition to a large section of the hijra community, there are many full-time or part-time male prostitutes in India. Some of them live in red-light areas of metropolitan cities; many seek male clients by offering massage services in parks, beaches, hotels and houses. Thousands of homeless and poor boys and young men employed in various establishments and firms are compelled to provide sexual services to their male bosses in return for their job security. Young men who work as helpers to highway truck drivers in their long trips provide such services...

Photo Exhibition “ARAVAN ARAVAN (Anita Khemka, Photo Ink, New Delhi) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "My photo documentation of 'The Aravan Festival' - a festival of eunuchs, gays & bisexuals was published as a book by UNAIDS. I am keen on preparing an exhibition of the same for your conference. This is the only socially accepted festival in the subcontinent that is entirely dominated by transsexuals, transvestites, & eunuchs; gays & bisexuals. It takes place in Koovagam, a nondescript village, and transforms the sleepy village into an arena of camaraderie, jubilation, nuptials and mourning. The origins of this cultural festival can be traced to a Hindu tale from the Epic 'The Mahabharatha' in which Aravan, a man about to be sacrificed to the gods, asked to be married before dying. To fulfill this last wish, Lord Krishna is said to have assumed the form of a beautiful woman, Mohini and married Aravan. The trans-gendered community, believes that they are like Lord Krishna - born as men but who take the form of a Mohini to satisfy the sexual needs of men. In India, issues such as celebration of sexual identity, homosexuality & transgenderedness are very rarely addressed. The exhibition, besides giving a glimpse of the diversity of these communities in India also focuses on interesting perspectives, and shows how certain cultural practices and traditional societies accepted individuals and communities that are now seen as social deviance and shunned by modern societies. It is essentially a study of sexual identity in the Indian social and cultural environment with a focus on HIV/AIDS."

A Tour Beyond the Taj Mahal (Must Scroll): (Alternate Link) "I'm not one to read "gay" into a place if it's not there. In India, same-sex behavior runs a close second to cricket as the national pastime. The gay cruising spots in Indian cities are well known and busy. Truck stops offer not only female sex workers, but male sex workers as well. Hotels usually have massage or "towel" boys available to exchange pleasure for the equivalent of $2 or $3 U.S. of rupees... The invisibility of gay men in India is also perpetuated by gay  men themselves. There are plenty of rich, influential gays who could make a difference but choose not to upset their comfortable lives. Coming out would distress their mothers and shame their wives, adversely affect the family business and, worst, make it difficult to get inexpensive sex... "And all the risk groups are not being dealt with. For instance, homosexuality -- well, it's illegal, so people don't come out. In Bombay it's somewhat different -- you must know about Bombay Dost and Ashok Row Kavi -- so something is being done there. First the government said there was no AIDS in India, then they said there was no sex, now they say there is no same-sex behavior." - Sexual Taboos Hamper India’s Fight Against AIDS. - Homophobic Police ABuse of India's AIDS Workers Worsens.

Gay Bombay Home Page: - Coming Out Stories. - Issues: Links to. - Gay Bombay comes out. - Articles. - For people like us: A placard reading ‘Indian and lesbian’ caught the eye and set tongues wagging in Delhi. Ashwini Sukthankar chronicles a sexual revolution in the making. - Being Lesbian in India.(Alternate Link) - An interview about being lesbian in India. - Tour de Queer India: A German’s fascination with strong women (PDF Download): "I came to India, looking for lesbians there, thinking they must be terribly suppressed and totally unheard off. I wanted to learn more about them, and thought I could help them getting a wider public abroad. I was fortunate enough to have a friend in Delhi, who introduced me to many others. I met all these lesbians, bisexuals, dykes, women attracted to women, and whatever else they may call themselves. I learned to say queer women, and I was impressed. I learned much more. The women I met were so much more at home in queer discourses, so much further in developing concepts, so much more active than me. It was fascinating. The women were fascinating. It was the best trip through India I had so far. India became so much more diverse, vibrant, exciting than I thought before, knowing only my conservative family...

Ashok Row Kavi: Profile (1993). - Interview with Ashok Row Kavi: Reports on common male homosexual activity in India, often called "musti" and "sex between men is often not thought of as sex": "Ritually castrated men who dress and live as women. We have millions of hijrahs. India has a clever method of sequestering homosexuals. We mix up homosexuality with gender. If you are effeminate in India, your family often assumes you're gay and forces you to live among the hijrahs, even if you're heterosexually inclined, as many effeminate men are. We shunt you off into a caste... I was one of the very few out gay men in a country of 900 million. I was making outrageous claims that there might be one or two other gay men in India, and that not all gay men are effeminate... Sex between men is often not thought of as sex... But when we distribute condoms outside the public toilets where men are having sex with men, they say: "Why are you giving this to me? These are for contraception." You say: "What the hell were you doing inside?" They say: "That was musti, man -- that was fun." - Ashes to Ashok. - India: minutes of the press conference held by geeta kumana and ashok row kavi. - Wikipedia: Ashok Row Kavi

Gay Today Interview with Ashok Row Kavi. - Same Sex Love in India - Book Review by Ashok Row Kavi. - Gay Leaders in India Gather for Conference N/A (May 4, 2000): "MUMBAI, India - An interview with one of the country's most outspoken gay civil rights activists [Ashok Row Kavi] on the eve of the all-India conference for sexual minorities was published in the Times of India recently. - Gay Games Amsterdam 1998 (Radio Netherlands): "Ashok Row Kavi is chairperson of the Humsafar Trust and manager of Bombay Dost, a newsletter for gays and lesbians in Bombay, India. He found out he was gay at the age of twelve." "I was hshocked to find out there was another form of sexuality. Boys interested in girls. That was traumatic for me." - Indian Gay Activist Addresses the United Nations. - Raj Ayyar: Global Awareness in the Classroom.

Networks, Language and Sexual Behaviors of Men who have Sex with Men in an Urban Setting (PDF Download) (Download Page): "The present study was taken up in Pune. This is second largest city (next to Mumbai), in the western state of Maharashtra in India. It has a population of around 2.4 million..." - Assessment of transsexual and homosexual activity in Madras, India. - Gays in India closeted by caste and class: "The Indian gay male community that exists at the moment is made up of privileged middle and upper class men who keep in contact through a private net-work. Everyone is married - or at least expected to be. Homosexuals of other classes may be tolerated on the margins of this group for sexual purposes...  The real Indian gay man has yet to surface in strength to challenge the prevailing heterosexist culture and the mythology of the family."

Homosexuality in Ancient India. - Homosexuality and Theravada Buddhism. - Homosexuality and Sikhism. - Homosexuality and Sikhism. - Homosexuality and Sikhism. - Homosexuality and our forefathers. - Sexuality in Ancient India: A Study Based on the Pali Vinayapi.taka. - Pandit Nehru's Homosexuality. (Alternate Link) - India's Slow Descent Into Homophobia (Alternate Link). - Homophobia within India. - The developing world's homophobia is a legacy of colonial rule. - Homosexuality in India: To begin with, India's colourful history is rife with examples of homosexuality in different forms... Therefore, it is a great irony that at a time when the West has begun to come to terms with this controversial lifestyle, India is still governed by laws made by Westerners in a different age altogether... In today�s urban India, cases of homosexuality have an undeniable presence. However for a vast majority of them, secrecy is not just preferable but necessary... 

Queering India with Ruth Vanita: an interview by Raj Ayyar.: For me, as for many other South Asians, the book is a real eye-opener. "Same-Sex Love in India" cracks open the clichéd stereotype, held in both India and the West that sees homoeroticism as a foreign import and that India has always gone back and forth between arranged  heterosexual marriages and ascetic celibacy." - Asian Males: Natural Curiosity & Same-Sex Love in India. - Saleem Kidwai Uncovers the Many Faces of Gay India. - Women Icons for Gay Men.

Epidemic of Abuse: Police Harassment sf HIV/AIDS Outreach Workers in India: PDF Download. - Rampant violation of rights of sexuality minorities: "A pioneering case study by the People's Union for Civil Liberties - Karnataka has shown that sexuality minorities in India, who include gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals, face intense discrimination and violation of their human rights at the hands of the state and society. The report, the first of its kind brought out by a human rights organisation in India, was released this morning at the Press Club of Bangalore and simultaneously in five other Indian cities." - Circulated as a background paper for the workshop "Strategies to Advance lesbian and Gay rights [In India]", 7th-9th November 1997, Mumbai. - Men who have sex with men and the law.

Geographies of Contagion: Hijras, Kothis and the Politics of Sexual Marginality in Hyderabad, India (Gayatri Reddy, University of Illinois at Chicago) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "For the first time, a couple of years ago, a medical clinic for “all lgbt individuals” was opened in the south-Indian city of Hyderabad. As one of the gay-identified volunteers at the clinic informed me, this facility was indeed for “all gays and kotis…but please tell hijras (the so-called third sex or indigenous transgendered identity) to come only on Sundays.” On further inquiry, I was told that this injunction was necessitated because gay men’s respect was at stake: “If hijras come during a weekday, what will people think? Everyone will know this is a ‘homosex’ clinic then, and our respect will go.” Drawing on such constructions of sexuality, respect, and stigma this paper explores the emergence and contextual deployments of the signifiers gay, koti, homosex, and hijra in Hyderabad, and their increasingly complex and fluid circulations within the semantic fields of AIDS and sexual rights discourses. By mapping the geographies of stigma and contagion between and among these various “sexual identities,” this paper highlights the multiple, shifting constructions of sexual politics, citizenship, and rights operating in contemporary India."

Writings by South Asians on South Asian lesbigay themes. - News clippings related to Outings in the India's Media. - Sexuality in Modern India: Critical Concerns. - Sexual health workshops in Bangladesh and India for males who have sex with males. - What it means to be gay - homosexuality and HIV in India: "Many gay men in the West define themselves by their sexuality: you are either gay or straight. But the situation in India is more complex. There are several patterns of homosexual behaviour. The standard model of collective action against HIV is impractical here."

Stand up and be counted gay! "Professor Rao, openly homosexual himself, argued that "homosexuals should come out and become politicised to fight for their rights in India." "Only when your homosexuality becomes a passionate identity can a gay movement become a success in this  country," was pretty much the underlying tenor of Professor Rao's speech." - Hidden homosexuals: Fugitives in their own land: "It took Chopra 30 years to muster the courage to come out of the closet. Yet, he is luckier than most of his ilk. For, 99 percent of the country's gay men and women remain closeted all their lives. A sexual revolution may have come to India's heterosexual world, but it is yet to touch theirs." 

Hundreds march in rare gay march in Calcutta. - Calcutta gays hold rare march. - Calcutta Pride March 2004. - Fear and loathing in gay India: Throughout South Asia, homosexuality has been a taboo subject. There are signs in some areas that gay people are now becoming more open in their behaviour. In the first of a series of articles from the region, the BBC's Soutik Biswas looks at gay life in India..." - Homosexuality: some reflections from India

At Home in a World of Strangers. Towards a Comparison of Gay Urban Cultures: - Madras, India: "In traditional Indian sexual culture a concept of homosexuality does not exist. What does exist is a specific expression of third gender called Hijra (in the North) and Ali in the South. Ali and Hijra come close to the Western transsexual (men who feel like females and have the desire for a sex change). It is estimated that in Madras some 200 Ali sell sex. They work the streets and have cruising places of their own. This circuit is part of this study. The other important circuits are constituted by men. Danga (effeminate men, prefer passive role in sex with other men), double-deckers (neutral gender identity, but prefer same-sex relations), panthi (masculine men who have sex with men, ali and women), the whole gamut of men who have sex with men including those who do not necessarily have any preference for the same sex, but are into it for business (rent boys) are the target of this study. Gay culture in India is still in a nascent stage. Men who have a feminine strain in their gender identity and have an exclusive preference for the same sex are largely underground and not out in the open."

The Humsafar Trust was born out of the publishing efforts of the gay and lesbian newsletter, Bombay Dost. - Gay Bombay: "Bombay, capitale économique de l’Inde, est aussi un laboratoire des changements sociaux. Entre les villas des stars de “Bollywood” et les gares cernées de bidonvilles, les homos se frayent un chemin difficile vers la reconnaissance. Le Humsafar Center, première organisation gay du pays, les accueille, les écoute et leur parle de safe-sex. Mais la loi reste hostile aux gays indiens." - Where are the homosexuals? You don't have to look too far.. - The secret lesbian domino effrects in Bollywood.

Intertextual Sexuality: Parodies of Class, Identity, and Desire in Liminal Delhi (PDF Download): This article examines articulations of class, identity, and desire as performed by a community of kotis in northern India, a transgender group that impersonates a second transgender group known as hijras in a staged event called “hijra-acting.” Through a linguistic parody of lower-class hijras performing a birth celebration for their upperclass patrons, kotis critique the class-based animosity between hijra and gay sexualities in contemporary India, spoofing the sexual desires associated with both groups as inferior to their own. The analysis demonstrates that identity and desire are best understood as mutually constituted intertextual phenomena, with both importantly reliant on ideological linkages of language and socioeconomic class for their articulation.

Indian National Gay Conference (YAARIAN ‘99). - A report on the Yaarian ’99 Gay conference. - Articles by & about South Asian women. (New Web Site)- Trikone Magazine Index of Issues from 1995 -2001). - Yaraana: Gay Writing from India

The Ultimate "Planet Out" Guide to Queer Movies (Country: India). - Lesbian film sets India on Fire. - "Fire" Closed, Supported. - Lesbian Group in India Emerges from 'Fire' N/A. - Lesbianism film named 'Fire'.- Fire is a fascinating anomaly. It's an Indian feature written and directed by a woman, Deepa Mehta; she lives and works in Canada; and her subject is one of India's many gender-related taboos: lesbianism. - Lesbian groups meet at mumbai film fest. - Long Life of a Short Film: BOMgAY (Alternate Link): I wish to share with you the story of why and how I came to produce BOMgAY, a short film that had the dubious distinction of becoming India's first "gay" film. - Bombay Boys. - 1st International Film Festival of Sexuality and Gender Plurality, India, 2003. - Bombay Eunuch. - Documentaries: Bombay Eunuch and Trembling Before G-d. - Bollywood Dares. - Synopsis: A unique film coming from India where homosexuality is still taboo, The Pink Mirror (Gulabi Aaina), is a colorful funny look into the Indian homosexual closet. - My Brother Nikhil makes HIV and homosexuality household issues.

India's gays tiptoe anonymously into the limelight: Shrenik uses only one name to avoid being clearly identified. The young film director has chosen not to invite relatives or friends from home to attend the premiere of his film Lost and Found tonight in Delhi. He hopes his parents never see it.His is one of half a dozen new films on being gay in India, which will be shown this week as part of the country's first gay arts festival, an event that marks a cautious edging towards the mainstream of a long-oppressed community. 'Such an event would have been unthinkable even five years ago,' Gautam Bhan, one of the organisers of the QueerFest, said... - Filmmaker Faisal Saif: I understand that your movie Come December was banned by Indian censors twice. Can you explain why it was banned, and what your opinion about that is? My film was the first feature film in India that spoke about homosexuality. And three years earlier, according to Indian censors, our Indian audience was not ready to face this film. We went ahead in courts and finally the high court permitted the film with an A certificate (NC 17) but they still gave 17 major cuts. I was very depressed by this though, that at the end of the day a film's fate is decided by 5 to 6 people.

India Lesbian Film Furor Continues [in New Delhi] (Alternate Link). - An Interview with Deepa Mehta, Director of 'Fire.'  - More protests against 'Fire'. - Fire, Sparks and Smouldering Ashes: A film about the relationship of two women touches sensitive ralities in Indian society. - Kathleen Spencer-Chapman on religious censorship in India. - Riots in india over lesbian film. - Lesbian film row 'good for India'. - Lesbophobia raises its head in Indian women's groups. -  Naive Outpourings of a Self-Hating Indian; Deepa Mehta's Fire. - Can Indian Lesbians ever live a dignified life in India and Bollywood? No matter what you think, Bollywood wave now is L word? - India's Lesbians Organize.

Queering Bollywood: Queering Bollywood is an exhibition and demonstration of a collection of queer readings in Indian cinema. It is open and collaborative in nature. The idea for doing something like this was born at the Queer film festival organized by Pedestrian Pictures in 2003. The idea was to initiate the process of analysing and collecting information on queer representations in cinema, especially in the Indian context, by creating a database of resources ranging from articles, film clippings, magazine stories etc., aiming eventually to create:..." - Gay-Themed Film Tests Sensibilities in India: ... a low-budget drama called "My Brother Nikhil" opened in movie theaters across India, telling the story of a gay man's struggle with his family and his country after contracting the virus that causes AIDS...

Queering Bollywood: - Queering Bollywood : Alternative Sexualities in Popular Indian Cinema. - Memories Pierce the heart ; Homoeroticism, Bollywood-Style. - The Changing Image of the Hero in Hindi Films. - Long Life of a Short Film. - Queer Bollywood, or "I'm the player, you're the naive one": patterns of sexual subversion in recent Indian popular cinema. - Queer Pleasures for Queer people - Film television and Sexuality in India. - Sexuality in the Chess Players. -  More articles available or referenced. - Actors can’t shy away from homosexuality: Rahul.

Ethics of Representation: The Indian Queer, Media and Art (Sumanyu Satpathy, Delhi University) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "Indian queer theorists such as Ruth Vanita and Saleem Kidwai have striven to show how same-sex love is part of India's cultural heritage without a trace of homophobia. Though homophobia is a relatively late entrant in Indian culture via Christian morality and British legislation, right-wing activists have claimed otherwise. They routinely attack cinema halls screening movies with explicit scenes of lesbian love. Showing surprising insensitivity, the Indian media recently sensationalized news of the murder of two gay men in New Delhi, highlighting the crime as a gay crime. As before, queer activists like Kavi pointed out how the media treated such news in an insensitive manner, seeing queer existence in terms of criminality and depravity. The positive fallout of these controversies has been that more and more people are participating in the debates and queer existence has gained some visibility, with many coming out in defense of the sensitive portrayal of lesbian identity. Also, the homophobic tirade against films and theatre is being increasingly matched by equally vehement protests by queer activists which might result in greater tolerance. Whereas queer activists raise the question of ethics concerning media coverage, they rarely probe the ethicality of queer conduct and ethics of representation of these identities. My paper examines ethical issues concerning the act of coming out, media responsibilities, and those of the queer activists, not only towards the queer community but also to the society in general."

Why Can't  Women Love Women?  "A major area of concern is the oppressive social structure and violent opposition to lesbian love that drives many young women to commit suicide. Two girl students at Nanavati College (Mumbai) committed suicide in September 1998 because their parents were opposed to their relationship. In October 1998, two young women from Hulipur village in Orissam signed a notarized "Deed of Agreement for Partnership as well as to remain Life Partner". Four days later, they consumed poison and left a joint suicide note that no one should be held responsible for their death." - Controversial Hindi flick provokes civil unrest N/A. - 'Obscene' Tamil film angers women. - Girlfriend, Review.

Bombay Boys: These boyz mix it up, sort of, in what seems to be India’s first gay indie: "Writer-director Kaizad Gustad’s Bombay Boys (1998) is, of course, not the first Indian film to deal "seriously" with the politics of homosexuality. (I stress "seriously" because Bollywood has for long been crowded with a backwards parade of swishy queens, sequined sissies, and other unenlightened, "comic relief" stereotypes). - Bombay Boys.

From Global Gayz:  Gay India 2006 - Part 1 (Intro): Gay Bombay/Mumbai, Part 2: Gay Hyderabad. Part 3: Gay Chennai. Part 4: Gay Bangalore.

The NAZ Foundation (India) Trust.

NFI (NAZ Foundation International) Assessments / Reports: MSM (Men Who Have Sex With Men) Assessments In India - Situational Assessments Among MSM In South Asia: Four Cities: Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pondicherry (India) Sylhet (Bangladesh)  (Full: PDF Download). Delhi (PDF Download) - Chennai (PDF Download) - Calcutta (PDF Download) - Bangalore (PDF Download) - Lucknow (PDF Download) - Mysore (PDF Download) -  Hyderabad (PDF Download) - Pondicherry (PDF Download) - Pune (PDF Download) - Sylhet (PDF Download). - Men who have sex with men in India have high HIV prevalence and multiple risk factors for HIV. - Men Who Have Sex With Men in India: An Annotated Bibliography. - HIV in India: A Complex Epidemic.

Abstracts: - HIV related risk behavior of men having sex with men in Mumbai and Thane. - Homosexual activity among rural Indian men: implications for HIV interventions. - Moral ambivalence and irregular practices: contextualizing male-to-male sexualities in Calcutta/India. - Counseling gay/bisexual men: Experiences of an Indian community-managed organization. - Sex behaviour of men who have sex with men and risk of HIV in Andhra Pradesh, India. - High HIV prevalence and risk behaviors in men who have sex with men in Chennai, India. - 'Conceiving Kothis': Men Who Have Sex with Men in India and the Cultural Subject of HIV Prevention. - The modernist fallacy in homosexual selection theories: Homosexual and homosocial exaptation in South Asian society.

Magnus Hirschfeld Archive for Sexology: Index Page: India: - Homoerotic, Homosexual, and Ambisexual Behaviors. - Gender Conflicted Persons. - HIV/AIDS. - Sex Behaviour of Men who have Sex with Men and Risk of HIV in Andhra Pradesh, India. -

First International Conference of Asian Queer Studies (2005): Papers available for download. - The 2005 Conference Abstracts: Many of these possible papers were either not presented or not made avaible as full text papers (PDF Download) (Alternate Link). - Titles for abstracts of these paper: related to India:  - We don't do data, we only do action-based work (Chandra Shekhar Balachandran, The Dharani Trust, Bangalore, India). - Creating a Lesbian Utopia: Reading the Queer Subtext of Mira Nair’s India Cabaret (Bidisha Banerjee, Independent Scholar). - Sexuality and the Politics of Space: A Study of Gays in New Delhi City of India (Kiran Bhairannavar, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi): "The paper looks into how Spaces of home, workplace, public spaces and society at large are appropriated and controlled by the heterosexual majority thus marginalizing gays to suffering, discrimination and harassment...." - “It's not my job to tell you, it's okay to be gay”: Medicalisation of Homosexuality (Vinay Chandran, Swabhava Trust, Bangalore, India). - Bollywood Spectacles: Queer Diasporic Critique in the Aftermath of September 11th (Gayatri Gopinath, University of California at Davis). - Anti-sodomy Laws in India: Harassment & Socio-Cultural Aspects (Sachin Jain, Mumbai University). - Photo Exhibition “ARAVAN ARAVAN (Anita Khemka, Photo Ink, New Delhi). - Geographies of Contagion: Hijras, Kothis and the Politics of Sexual Marginality in Hyderabad, India (Gayatri Reddy, University of Illinois at Chicago). - Ethics of Representation: The Indian Queer, Media and Art (Sumanyu Satpathy, Delhi University). - Queering Sex Work? Sexuality and Sexual Commerce in Urban India (Svati Shah, New York University). - Fag Hags in Filipino Queer Culture: Friendships, Identities, and Personality (Beatriz Torre, University of the Philippines Diliman). - Queer Diasporas and the Transnational Filipina Body (Gina Velasco, University of California). 

Resources: - Gay Bombay. - Gay Delhi. - Gay and Lesbian Vaishnava Association, Inc. - (Solidarity and Action Against The HIV Infection in India) SAATHII' s Listing of Programs Serving the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Communities, including Males Who Have Sex with Males (MSM). - Sangama: Queer Groups in India & Abroad. - Good As You (Bangalore). - Swabhava: actively involved advocacy and awareness building on sexuality issues. We organise and conduct training on sex and sexuality, HIV, counselling and other similar issues. We also participate and present our views in debates and policy meetings. - India Gay & Lesbian Issues News. - glbtq - social sciences: India.

Resources: - Utopia.

Gay India (Global Gayz): - News/Reports 1998-07. - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden- Sodomy Laws: India.

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

BANGLADESH - Pushing Boundaries (Special feature): Anything related to gender and sexuality in general is regarded as a taboo subject in Bangladesh. On the off chance that sexual minorities such as women, homosexuals, hermaphrodites, trans-genders (hijras) and sex workers are given a platform to speak about their issues, it is usually about just that -- issues. Such platforms are usually entrenched with stereotypes and negativity. Forget tolerating and giving equal rights to these minorities, it is difficult enough for most people in Bangladesh to accept that these issues exist, that they are real, that these people are a part of our society and that they, too, want to live a life free of stigma and sexual repression. In trying to take steps towards eliminating the ignorance and indifference towards these groups, BRAC University's James P Grant School of Public Health hosted the first International Workshop on Gender and Sexuality from July 28-30 at the BRAC Centre where not only were there participants and presenters from Bangladesh but also hailing from different parts of the world... "Sexuality as a broader topic is not discussed," says Dr. Rashid. "And when it is, it is usually associated with negative terms such as HIV/AIDS, diseases, guilt; or couched in public health issues, such as the importance of practicing safe sex and abortion, but sexuality itself is a huge issue..

Community Building in Bangladesh (Must Scroll): The same-sex scene among men in Bangladesh is "distinctive," says Dr. Carol Jenkins, who was recently an FHI advisor there. In the fundamentalist Islamic area of Sylhet, for example, traditions tacitly permit older men to have sex with younger men because it contributes to the maintenance of female purity. However, as Dr. Jenkins puts it, "the acceptability is in private -- publicly it is deplored." She noted that a random sample of rickshaw pullers this year in Chittagong, another conservative city in Bangladesh, revealed that 60 percent of the men had engaged in sex with other men in the last year. Faced with this double standard of private tolerance and public condemnation, FHI is supporting the Bandhu Welfare Society, a local organization that has developed an effective, discreet strategy for reaching men who have sex with men in Bangladesh. "As being a man who has sex with men is a serious source of shame to men if their families find out," Dr. Jenkins said, "bringing these men together and giving them a safe space in which to discuss their sexual health issues has been extremely valuable and successful.".

Gay Bangla: "There has been a number of cases where the family has accepted the same sex proclivity of their sons, and even daughters. While family dinners with same sex partners are still not in, children are not thrown out if they are revealed to be homosexuals.But there certainly are difficulties when homosexuals first declare their preference, known as "coming out" in gay parlance. Most families respond with dismay and a kind of corporate shame. Many feel that they have gone wrong somewhere in the child's upbringing. Since some gay activists in Bangladesh are very highly educated, once in a while, foreign education is cited as a reason for being gay. In fact, Bangladeshis are very active on the global gay scene. But those still in the closet oscillate between confusion, guilt and fear. "Why do they hate us?" asks a gay man in Dhaka... - Blurring the gender lines in Bangladesh. - Dhaka Diary: Gays and Lesbians: the hidden minorities of Bangladesh.

Gay Bangladesh: Arriving in Dhaka, the capitol of Bangladesh, is instant immersion into the dense capitalistic present attached to equally intense traditions of family and Islam. Anywhere a visitor looks there are hoards of people-- dark faces, beautiful and weathered, young and old. But nowhere will one see anything that resembles a gay community. Homosexual life is a stealth subculture that thrives in secrecy yet enjoys the benefits of permissive friendship intimacy...It is virtually impossible for an outside casual gay visitor to access poorer class gays, unless by accident or an offer of money, both of which are very unlikely since homosexuality as a mutually intentional sex act is indiscernible among the semi or uneducated underclass in Bangladesh...  - LGBT rights in Bangladesh.

Sexual health workshops in Bangladesh and India for males who have sex with males. - Different Views and Experiences on Covering Homosexuality: Bangladesh: "In my country, homosexuality is invisible in the mass media. But I had ever seen a picture of homosexual people presenting in a column named "the odd world" in the foreign page of a English newspaper. It seems that homosexuality only exist in the western country in the other part of the world. But everyone knows it is not true..." 

Reproductive health needs of adolescents in Bangladesh: a study report [WP130, 1999] (PDF Download): "Homosexuality: In each of the study areas, there was at least one adolescent boy participant who knew about an adult male who was having sex with adolescent boys, and adolescent boys who were having sex with boys of similar age. This activity was termed as ‘jeena.’ Sometimes the men who were doing so provided incentives to their young partners. Some of the men were said to have forced young boys to have anal sex."

Bangladesh Street Children Suffer Sexual Abuse: Officials estimate that there are some 20,000 to 30,000 children between the ages of eight and 16 now living in this city's streets... "There are some kids who take it as a game and later share the experience with friends," he also says. "And thus multiple- partner sexual involvement becomes a habit for many as they grow up. Girls do it for fun and for earning a living. Homosexual practices, too, are very high among the boys." - Trafficking and Prostitution in Bangladesh: "Prostitution in Bangladesh is not limited to girls and women. Government representatives and social scientists try to believe there is no homosexuality in Bangladesh. They don’t think there are boy prostitutes, but there are. They deny the existence of homosexuality or that women may also look for male prostitutes."

The Shadow Citizens: (Alternate Link, Must Scroll) There are gays in every society, including Bengali society, and there is no sense in suppressing and stifling homosexuality (In: Himal: The South Asian Magazine): "They will forgive me if I commit a murder but not if they find out that I have a boy friend." Mohsin is 28 years old, a Bangladeshi, and a gay. He was speculating on the possible reaction of his upper middle class family members if they were to discover his sexual preference... One of the reasons that homosexuality is treated so gingerly is that the country's Criminal Code decrees sodomy (homosexuality or advocacy of the same) a crime which is punishable with a jail sentence. Any discussion, not to speak of debate, is hence ruled out and homosexuality is driven into the shadow world... It is a different story for lesbians, however. Although it is no secret that dormitories record incidences of lesbianism and studies have corroborated the fact, it is kept a secret fearing loss of marriage prospects... The situation is somewhat different in Bengali society across the border in India. At the elite level, there is considerable acceptance of homosexuality and of gay groups..."

Why gay men flee Bangladesh. - Anne Frank's story recalled as gay couple fight to stay in Australia: "The Anne Frank analogy has become central to a case before the court over whether a gay couple from Bangladesh should have their claim for refugee status refused on the grounds that they would not face persecution if they kept their homosexual relationship hidden... The barrister for the men, Bruce Levet, said they faced bashings by police if they lived as an openly gay couple in Bangladesh. - Bangladesh's gay prostitutes take a step out of the closet. (Alternate Link) "But male sex workers are worried less about court action than about physical attacks. Many of the prostitutes are quickly singled out for being effeminate. Milan, 20, said he left home when his family learned of his orientation. After renting his first house on his own he was forced to move out when the owners also discovered his lifestyle. "My family did not accept my way of life as they noticed I was feminine and so I started prostitution to feed myself. What else could I do?" he asked. Milan said he has been beaten publicly -- and that the assailants would secretly come to him later for sex..."

Dhaka Forced To Face Sex Taboos: (Alternate Link: Must Scroll) (Alternate Link) "Homosexuality, in theory, does not even exist. But in reality, its practice is creating a dilemma for Bangladeshi authorities, social workers and medical professionals... It is not difficult to find male "sex workers" in the city. Each evening they can be seen loitering at busy intersections and parks that are well-known pick-up points... Among male sex workers in Dhaka, two brothers named Kalam and Lalu are perhaps the best known. Aged 26 and 24 respectively, both are dumb. An elder brother tried beating them to stop their "horrible acts", but now others in the family accept the situation. A nephew said: "Every morning my uncles come home with their pockets bulging with money. For poor people like us, money is crucial."

Revealing an Underworld Network: Male prostitution in Ramna. Lahari and Faraaz claimed that men of all social classes engage in sexual encounters with one another at Ramna. From "bureaucrats to university students and from truckdrivers to respectable officers frequent Ramna to buy sex from the male prostitutes." Faraaz and Lahari informed the Star that every evening between 8 and 10 p.m. are the peak hours of male prostitution in Ramna. Aside from the hijras there are also transvestites (men dressed up as women) who operate in a different space in the Park from the female sex-workers. There is an underlying agreement between the two groups not to infringe upon each other’s space, activities or clients. Most of these men receive an average of 12 to 15 partners each night. The researchers made an important distinction between the sex-workers and their clients. According to the researchers, the sex-workers are usually men from working class backgrounds who participate in prostitution for financial benefits. The clients on the other hand, visit the sex-workers because they have limited options to express their sexuality or desire for other men. Many of these clients are leading mainstream heterosexual lives and are even married to women.

Males who have sex with males in India and Bangladesh: (Word Download N/A) (Similar Document: The Kothi Framwork: Word Download): "It is often asked “how many MSM are there in Bangladesh? or India?”, usually by Western donors, consultants, and representatives of many AIDS NGOs. The question seems to be reasonable and make sense, but it actually represents a misconception of the context of male sexual behaviours in the region. In this context we should really be talking about male to male sexual behaviours rather than men who have sex with men (MSM). Further, the way the question is phrased generates a conception of MSM as an exclusive group, an identity rather than a behaviour. But, even more contentiously, the question itself cannot be answered with any adequate response or accuracy. In summary what we can say about male to male behaviours in Bangladesh and India is that..."

Men who have sex with men in Bangladesh N/A: (Pukaar Newsletter # 8, NFI) "There has been much intellectual work in recent years developing new theories of sexuality to try to explain the diversity of sexual interests and lifestyles that appear around the world. Many of these confound the simple notion that has been used in the West for the last 100 years to categorise human sexual expression into two simple aspects of a binary opposition the 'normative' heterosexuality and its dark side, 'homosexuality'. These two categories and the conceptual opposition pinning them together no longer hold weight when faced with the sexual diversity in many parts of the world, including Bangladesh. This is also increasingly acknowledged in many other developing countries where, once this binary opposition is set aside, we see much more complexity in human sexual expression."

A market and a mosque: (Alternate Link) And there’s another and another and another. Dotted around me are elegant, handsome young men in shirts and lunghi - long skirts - that are a little more colourful, a little more clean and a little more tightly bound than the men around them... And so an old man in white with a thick moustache and a curved back approaches the haughtiest youth, a fair-skinned broad-faced young man who in other circumstances might have a career as an actor or a model, but the conversation does not go far. A few minutes later I see the old man in another part of the market drinking a tea with another youth. They are more engaged and in a few minutes they will disappear down an alleyway to where a room can be rented for 50 taka (£0.50, $0.90) for an hour. We are joined by Ajoy, a Bandhu peer educator – someone who each evening goes out and talks to the young men, tells them about HIV/AIDS and condoms and the drop-in centre where they can see a doctor and meet other young men like themselves. I’ve already spoken to men who sell sex in Dhaka. I would like to do so here, but I do not want to deprive them of their earning time and I do not want to be the centre of attraction. Things are changing, Ajoy tells me, in a number of ways. Firstly, the money that the men make is going up – 50 to 100 taka now, instead of 30 to 50 taka two or three years ago. That means that their overall income can now be between 10,000 and 15,000 taka (£100 - £150 / $180 - $270) a month – considerably more than the Ajoy or Paritosh...

Confessiomns of a karaoke singer: We order, drink and talk. Fernando’s eyebrows rise when I admit to being gay. After a moment’s silence he asks if I think he is too. I had assumed not, but I put together the question, his prissy manner, worried frown and faded Hawaiian shirt. Yes, I think he’s gay. “How should I know?” I say. “I’m engaged to be married,” he tells me. “Oh,” I reply. “But I’ve had many gay experiences,” he goes on. “Oh,” I repeat. “Perhaps I am gay.” “Perhaps,” I shrug, not knowing what to say... What kind of man do you like, Fernando asks. He wants me to specify height, weight, body shape and other vital statistics, but I can only vaguely describe good looks and empathy. He is attracted to large, well-endowed men. Unfortunately there have been few in his life; he is sure that more would help him decide if he really was gay...

HIV/AIDS: Bagladesh (Alternate Link): Heterosexual relations of men who have sex with men in Bangladesh: a cultural understanding (Must Scroll): Studies on men who have sex with men (MSM) have tended to focus on measuring risk behaviours, with less attention given to the understanding of the meanings of their heterosexual relations. This results in missed opportunities for HIV interventions... The double sex life has implications for STI/HIV transmission among MSM and their male and female partners. Current interventions do not include MSMs entire sex life, instead stigmatise MSM by separating them from other men. Thus, understanding the breadth and meanings of sexual life of men is the key to reach MSM and their female partners. The task is difficult but achievable if the complexity of relationships is recognized in the local context."

Application of the Capture-Recapture Method for Estimating Number of Mobile Male Sex Workers in a Port City of Bangladesh: PDF Download."Although two-sample capture-recapture surveys are suitable for closed populations, this method was here applied to indirectly estimate the number of mobile MSWs in a conservative social setting, a port city of Bangladesh. Use of the method resulted in an estimation of 248 MSWs (95% confidence interval, 246-250) who picked up clients only at open and known contact venues. This estimate does not, however, reflect the total number as MSWs who worked in unknown hidden venues and could not be reached." - A propos des lieux de rencontre homosexuels. - Risky sexual practices amongst MSM in public sex environment in Dhaka of Bangladesh.

In their own words: the Formulation of Sexual and Reproductive Health Behaviour Among Young Men in Bangladesh: (Alternate Link)  "Male-to-male friendships, however, are actively supported, and casual sexual encounters between male friends as well as sex between masculine males and feminised males is quite common and accepted, even though this behaviour may be socially disapproved. All respondents in the general population of males reported having male friends who do sex with other male friends. This was not seen as sexual friendship, but as “friends helping friends” achieve discharge based on personal sexual needs. All kothi-identified males reported that they usually do sex with their masculine friends, but not with other kothi friends or with female friends. They also reported that they knew of many masculine males who do sex with their manly friends. They did not consider this to be normal behaviour since both males were manly.

Report on the Sero-Suveillance and Behavioral Surveillance of STD and AIDS in Bagladesh 1998-1999: PDF Download. - AIDS/HIV situation in Bangladesh: A Looming Threat. (Alternate Link) - Bangladeshis respond to safe sex campaign (Alternate Link):  But by December the number had risen to an average of 35 prostitutes and 25 drug users at each centre each day. The number of eunuchs and gays had also increased substantially but it was difficult to keep count of them, she said... "Eunuchs, gays and women sex workers mostly lacked adequate education to understand the dangers of STDs or Aids, but it appears that campaigns over the years are slowly yielding some results," she said. In Dhaka nearly 300 eunuchs have formed a group called Bandhan (Bondage) and are being educated by CARE about safe sex and in turn are advising their partners and other eunuchs." - Health-AIDS-Bangladesh: Hundreds of Bangladeshis join anti-AIDS rally as infections rise.

Bangladesh: Rape fuel Bangladesh and India AIDs Crisis: (Alternate Link) "Police officers and crime lords who sexually abuse gay men and sex workers are stoking an emerging AIDS epidemic in Bangladesh, a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report warned on Tuesday. Additionally, the officers often attack AIDS outreach workers, in a direct blow to the people attempting to contain the virus... The report gives case studies of people who have complained about the police brutality toward gay men. One victim, Mohammed H, 17, said he has been arrested and raped many times for no reason other than being gay. "About three months ago," he said, " I was arrested by police and taken to a police camp and then from there, to a sugar cane field." "Four people raped me. I thought I could not continue and feared that a fifth person would rape me, so I ran away. I was completely naked. I had to go to my house by way of the outside of town." "I was most recently raped by police three or four days ago." - Cops on AIDS alert list. (Note: Article may move: Google Search). Ravaging the Vulnerable: Abuses Against Persons at High Risk of HIV Infection in Bangladesh - Table of Contents. (With links to HLTM sections of report and PDF Files for full report.

Papers related to homosexuality (Search Needed): 20. Varieties of homosexuality in Bangladesh: implications for HIV prevention. Authors: Jenkins C; Author Affiliation: Int'l. Cent. Diar. Dis. Res. B., Dhaka, Bangladesh. Source: Int Conf AIDS. 1998;12:244-5.  21. Risky sexual amongst MSM in public sex environment in Dhaka of Bangladesh. Authors: Islam A. Author Affiliation: Bandhu Social Welfare Society, Kakrail, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Source: Int Conf AIDS. 1998;12:370.  22. Risky sexual practices amongst MSM in public sex environment in Dhaka of Bangladesh. Authors: Ahmed S; Anisul MA; Sohel SR; Khan S. Author Affiliation: Bandhu Social Welfare Society, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Source: Int Conf AIDS. 1998;12:370.

Are You Gay? Can you prove it? (Related to a Bangladesh refugee case): That might seem to be a strange question.  More commonly, people struggle to pass as “straight” in the face of constant speculation that they might be gay.  Generally speaking, being gay  involves such a stigma that if a person willingly declares that he is gay, most people would be inclined to accept that without further proof. But if you want to stay in Australia as a refugee because, as a gay person, you face persecution in your home country, you will be asked this question... - Related Information: Under the Gaydar.

Abstracts: - Men who have sex with men’s sexual relations with women in Bangladesh. - Varieties of homosexuality in Bangladesh: implications for HIV prevention. - Transgender community: Health services in Bangladesh till need more attention to prevent STD, HIV/AIDS. - Risk factors for HIV infection in Males who have Sex with Males (MSM) in Bangladesh (Full Text). - A hidden sexuality: hijra sex workers and their risks of HIV/AIDS and std in Bangladesh.

NFI (NAZ Foundation International) Assessments / Reports: Dhaka MSM (Men Who Have Sex With Men) Assessment - (Full: PDF Download) (Download Page) - Situational Assessments Among MSM In South Asia: Four Cities: Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pondicherry (India) Sylhet (Bangladesh)  (Full: PDF Download)

Anonymous (2006) Country Report: Bangladesh. For The Risks and Responsibilities International Consultation on Male Sexual Health and HIVC in Asia and the Pacific. PDF Download. Content/Download Page.

Bangladesh National AIDS committee (2006). Country Progress Report, Reporting period: January 2003 – December 2005. UNAIDS. PDF Download.

First International Conference of Asian Queer Studies (2005): Papers available for download. - The 2005 Conference Abstracts: Many of these possible papers were either not presented or not made avaible as full text papers (PDF Download) (Alternate Link). - Titles for abstracts of these paper: related to Bangladesh: - MSM: A New way of imposing sexual inequity! (Sharful Khan, Social and Behavioural Sciences Unit, Public Health Sciences Division, ICDDRB, Dhaka, Bangladesh).

Gay Bangladesh (Global Gayz): - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden. - Sodomy Laws: Bangladesh.

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

NEPAL: - Nepali gay rights group honored: The Blue Diamond Society, Nepal's growing LGBT civil rights group, has been granted an esteemed international award from the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission....- Nepal gay group internationally recognised. - An Evening of Conversation & Celebration with Sunil Pant, Blue Diamond Society. - Nepal LGBT group fighting for visibility. - Homosexual beauty contest in Nepal. - Ain't No Mountain High Enough to Stop Gay Pride in Nepal

Nepal’s New Constitution and the Fundamental Rights of Minorities: On January 8 [2007], the Blue Diamond Society organized a conference to discuss the possibility of constitutional rights for sexual minorities. It was the first time in the recorded history of Nepal that such an event had occurred in a formal way, in the presence of numerous lawyers, jurists, and advocates. The honorary guest of the event was Justice Laxmi Prasad Aryal, a prominent figure in the juridical history of Nepal and the current head of the Interim Constitution Drafting Committee... - Happy to be gay: (Alternate Link) On 18 January the Supreme Court will make a landmark ruling on the legal status of homosexuality in Nepal.  - Rights For Nepal's Lesbian: Lesbians in Nepal have demanded equal rights including political involvement and social security, arguing that they - like other citizens - actively took part in last year's movement that restored democracy ending King Gyanendra's absolute rule... - Nepal army boots soldiers for lesbianism: The military denied the claim.... Nepal's Constitution bars discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but the army does not have any clear regulations on the issue. - Trans-gender obtains citizenship. - Nepali man first to be recognised as “he” and “she”.

Elton John stands behind Nepal's gay community: British singer Sir Elton John has taken up cudgels on behalf of Nepal's sexual minorities, who were recently told by a government official that instead of trying to educate the gay community about the spread of HIV/AIDS they should 'find something better to do'.... - Gay Group in Nepal Gets Cash Boost From Elton John AIDS Foundation. - HIV awareness amongst MSM still low. - Blow to Elton John's AIDS project in Nepal: Blue Diamond Society (BDS), Nepal's only gay rights organisation in Nepal, said it had been asked to stop its support programme for gays and transgenders who are HIV positive in Dhangadi district on the ground that gays 'polluted' society...

Maoists Should End Anti-Gay Violence: Kidnapping Contradicts Promise ‘Not to Punish Homosexuals’. - Nepal police assault youths for carrying condoms: On the day Nepal's MPs and rights activists were to interact with the gay community and discuss the inclusion of their rights in a new constitution, the police assaulted and stripped five young men in a park here because they were carrying condoms.... - Troublesome Reports from Nepal: Maoist Homophobia? - Nepal's gay community joins anti-king protests. - HIV hospice for gay and transgender men offers hope. - Crossing sexual boundaries in Nepal. - First public gay wedding: Anil Mahaju and Diya Kashyap met about a year ago, were attracted towards each other and, after going steady for some time, decided to tie the knot... - Police Attack Transgender People: Police in Kathmandu attacked a group of transgender people on Wednesday, underscoring the vulnerability of all Nepalese to police abuse since King Gyanendra seized direct power in February and suspended most civil liberties, Human Rights Watch said today... - The continuing discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgendered people in Nepal, and other countries throughout the world, was described as "unacceptable" today by a United Nations representative. - Nepal tour operators woo gay visitors. - Gay Rights in High Places: As the king fights a Maoist insurrection, the Nepali Supreme Court decides whether homosexual acts are "bestiality".

Out of the closets: Nepal’s lesbians are tired of hiding.- Sexual minorities for social security: Asking the government to ensure social security for sexual minorities, lesbians came out publicly and addressed a press conference... - Sexual minorities move SC for rights: People of third nature and homosexuals Wednesday moved the Supreme Court seeking constitutional and legal protection of their rights... - Army sacks ‘lesbian’ pair- Nepalese soldiers fired for ‘lesbianism’. - Nepal Army sacks women 'because they had no breasts'. - Nepal gays fight taboo to hold first "Pink Pageant". - After Miss Nepal, it's Miss Gay's turn at controversy. - Nepal gays hit by Maoist clean up drive.

Two girls "marry" each other. - Gay Unions Forged in Love, Not Law: In Nepal, homosexual couples hide their relationships, but with the current momentum, not for long. - Sexual Minorities/AIDS Group Fights Ban in Nepal Supreme Court. - Gay weekly coming soon: "Blue Diamond Society (BDS), the only organization in Nepal exclusively dedicated to the protection of sexual health and equal rights of gender minorities such as LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transsexuals) is bringing out its own weekly. The Blue Diamond Weekly, funded by the British Embassy, will be published both in English and Nepali..." - Nepal to Launch First Gay Magazine. - Une nouvelle voix pour les minorités sexuelles. - N/A (Archive Link). - Blue Diamond Society.  

Coming Out in Nepal. - Arrest for girls in love (Biratnagar, Nepal). - Police Detain Lesbian Youths In Nepal: Protection Against Mob Violence Urgently Needed. - Different Views and Experiences on Covering Homosexuality: Nepal. - My Cross-cultural Experience (Nepal): "Before coming to Sweden, I see homosexuality as an anti - natural thing. I was in a mind that they are destroying the balance of the nature as well as the society. But after visiting the ILGA (International Lesbians and Gays Association ) I began to re-think about it, said Manju Thapa from Nepal... ¨A significant thing relating to homosexuality in my country is that ¨they¨ (homosexuals) do not want to identify themselves as ¨gays¨ or ¨ lesbians¨ any more. They keep on saying that they are only best and true friends¨, she said." - Gay Jatra: “We don’t want a revolution, just the same respect given to everyone else. On Wednesday, Nepalis celebrated Gai Jatra with political satire, outlandish costumes and cross dressing. It was therefore a readymade occasion for the Blue Diamond Society (BDS) to stage Nepal’s annual gay pride march. Sunil Babu Pant, the founder, says, “All we want is to bring about awareness about homosexuality and celebrate it. We are not changing Gai Jatra into a gay jatra. This exercises our right to express ourselves.”...” - Gays allege detention, torture; cops spin another tale (Must Scroll): "The police forced a group of homosexual men into custody early this morning and detained them for about four hours at Durbar Marg police station and tortured them, says the group. "We went to a disco last night and then to Oriental restaurant which is open 24 hours a day. As soon as we got out of the restaurant and were heading home, some police personnel took us to a corner and told us they were taking us to a police station," said Ramesh Rai...". 

Cops beat Nepalese gays (Alternate Link) - Nepal: The brutal assault of two homosexuals by the Armed Police in Kathmandu: "Then the police threw both Jaya and Mani into the police van. In the van, the police tied up their hands, covered their faces, and forced them to lie face down. While the police drove around for almost one hour, they severely beat Jaya and Mani with boots and rifles in the van... were taken to an unknown Armed Police camp. There, they were taken to a dark room and about 15 to 20 police men came and started beating them severely. The police accused them of being Maoist. After two hours of assault, the police forced Jaya and Mani to give them oral sex. But they couldn't perform this act even to save themselves from further beating and torture because they were severely injured by the assault..." - Nepal's gay community angry over police "atrocity": "Gay rights activists have been beaten by police officers in Nepal, after they protested over the country's lack of equality for sexual minorities, according to local press reports. The group's rally took place outside the country's seat of government, the Singha Durba, in Kathmandu earlier this week the Himalayan Times says..." - Transgendered Nepalese face discrimination, abuse in Kathmandu.

Nepal: Sexual Rights Group at Risk of Closure. - Nepalese Supreme Court's Proposed Ban: "We are writing to express grave concern over the Nepalese Supreme Court's proposed ban on activities, including advocacy, by or on behalf of lesbians, gay men, transgender people, and men who have sex with men. The threatened ban comes in the wake of repeated recent allegations of police misconduct against these communities..." - Gay activists arrested in Nepal.  - 39 members of Blue Diamond Society arrested. - ICW Action Alert Update: Brief report of experience of Metis of their last 13 days. - Members of the Blue Diamond Society released. - Nepalese gay prisoners released.

Dressed up as women, they mark Teej in style: "They looked similar to thousands of women in red celebrating Teej today. Wearing saris, bangles, lipsticks, eyebrows, beads and tikas, they ? about two dozens of them - had gathered at the Blue Diamond Society to dance, sing and to have fun of the women?s festival. They were actually gays, dressed up as women, and they celebrated Teej as any other Hindu women who observe the festival wishing for the health and long-life of their husbands... Another meta said that nobody was inferior to others. “But our society hates us and takes us as criminals or inferior even to women.”
We are not to be blamed when the nature guided us to follow it, said a ta from Dharan. Ta is a man who acts as man... But they also are afraid to disclose their secrecy in the outside ? even to their families. While the dancing was going on, a gay phoned to say that he could not come because his father had arrived from outside the valley."

A new voice (Must Scroll): "Aunique cultural event took place on the day of Gaijatra this year in the Valley.The homosexuals for the first time in the cultural history of Nepal marched into the open space. The demonstrators appealed the public not to take their demonstration as a mere gay jatra. According to them, the main focus of it was to draw the attention of the concerned authority of the country... But one thing was distinctly different this year. The homosexuals or the gays marched openly. This event was not the celebration of death of any kind, but it was the celebration of the birth of a new cultural voice... The way the gays have made their entry to the public domains of Nepal can be taken as the role model for other cultural voices to follow. Nepal is a country of great cultures which have always given some space to the new voice. First, people who noticed this event questioned themselves — what should be their response to the homosexuals? Should we highlight their plea through the different channels of media? Answers were not unanimous..."

Need for sexual minorities to find their voices (Must Scroll. Alternate link): "BDS is in contact with more than 12,000 gays in Kathmandu and other areas in Nepal. The society, through its outreach programmes, is in contact with 10 to 12 lesbians each day in its 18 sites in Kathmandu. Due to the lack of funding and resources we haven’t been able to reach to everyone," said Pant. "There are many women who are still uncomfortable with saying they are lesbians and it is necessary to bring their voices out." Pant says that another reason for lesbians lagging behind in self-recognition is the restriction on freedom of movement to women. "Men can attend meetings, and give their time while it is hard for women," said Pant. But, this is slowly changing. "Homosexual women are now thinking of opening a society of their own," said Pant. It is perhaps, the progress of gays in the past few months, that have encouraged lesbians to follow suit for social acceptance. Pant adds that soon a society for lesbians, like BDS, will be established. "Women need to come into the open for protection of public health," said writer Thapa. The spreading of sexually-transmitted diseases like AIDS amongst homosexuals has made this even more important, she adds. "Since, homosexuals have sexual relationships with their partners in secret, often without protection, they need to be educated on safe sex," said Sapana Pradhan Malla, renowned advocate. Moreover, the law does not recognise homosexuals. "They need to be able to live without having to bear sexual, physical and emotional abuse," added Malla."

Lesbianism? Still taboo and scary in Nepal (Alternate link): " Katmandu: In a society where homosexual men are looked down upon, it is even more difficult for lesbians to wear their "lesbianism" on their duppattas. Their stories remain untold and their issues totally ignored-even by those ardent believers in incessant barking for common good...  Another pair Sheetal Pradhan and Gauri Sharma who have known each other for two years say that they do not intend to tell their parents about their affair. "We won't get married to men," they said in unison. They live with their parents and go to each other's house like any other normal friends and "stay overnight." There are many lesbians in Kathmandu and throughout the country but they are afraid to openly admit their preference. "We should all come forward and work for the welfare and protection of lesbians," said Sushila. To support lesbians and create awareness among them, Blue Diamond Society (BDS) has recently started a Lesbian Support Group. "The support group has started its work and plans to identify lesbians and their problems and create a broader network," said Sunil Babu Pant, director at BDS. According to him, around 40 lesbians in Kathmandu are in contact with BDS and most of them refuse to come to the office."

Lesbian couple's plea to live together (Must Scroll): "Two lesbians from Hetauda have filed an appeal to the police in Kathmandu seeking security and freedom to remain single, published reports said Wednesday. Meera's family has been forcing her to get married to a man and was about to forcibly get her formally engaged to the man living outside Kathmandu, according to Blue Diamond Society (BDS). The couple Radha and Meera contacted the Blue Diamond Society for help, the reports said. The BDS, as it says, is a private organisation working for the rights of homosexuals ( mr Dec 17, 2003).

Nepali Lesbian Couple Punished: "On March 27 [2000], Maya T., 18, and Indira R., 17 were handed over to police of the Pathari Village Development Committee by their relatives as neighbors jeered the couple. According to IGLHRC, "At the station, the two reportedly told police, 'No one will separate us and no one will stop us from loving each other.' They were held for two days and released without charges on the condition they not see each other again. Their families have kept them apart since. But IGLHRC says news of the relationship continues to rile neighbors and the women's "lives may be in danger.""

Coming Out: (Nepali Times: Alternate Link) "The Blue Diamond Society has had to struggle against taboos and mores. The first attempt at registering the society was denied because the officials objected to the very concept of homosexuality. Pant was pressurised to change the organisation’s objective into “correcting homosexual behaviour” but finally found a loophole that allowed him to work in the area of male health. That was the easy part. He was then faced with the challenge of coaxing MSMs to join the society because they were afraid of being targetted by homophobes. The society estimates that about 95 percent of MSMs are forced into heterosexual marriages by their families who don’t want scandals. The homosexuals suffer from depression, low self-esteem and social ostracisation. “We are forced to lead a split life—different on the inside from what we show on the outside,” he says. Pant’s own family and friends have been “incredibly” supportive of his work, but he knows this is rare. The society slowly gained their trust over the years. This Friday, they are holding a fashion show and beauty pageant. Participants are metas and tas (those who assume female roles and their male partners) who are intent on carving out a social space for themselves. Pant’s other concern is the plight of women who are attracted to members of their own sex. He wonders, “If Nepali men who enjoy greater freedom, decision making and mobility are tormented so much for their sexual preferences, how much more horrendous the situation must be for women!”"

Blue Diamond Society (BDS): "Nepal's only organization for sexual minorities, is transforming the lives of of sexual minorities including Meta, Dohori, Ta, Gay, Bisexual, lesbian, Hijra, Singaru, Fulumulu, Kothi, Kotha, Strian, Maugia, Panthi and manymore in Nepal. The Blue Diamond Society (BDS) was founded in 2001 in an effort to address the needs of sexual minorities. BDS is a community-based sexual health, HIV/AIDS, advocacy services for local networks of sexual minorities in Nepal. It provides a drop-in center (DIC), outreach work and clinical referrals for its constituents." - Press Release: "Last night {August 9, 2004] around 22:30 PM 39 members of Blue Diamond Society were haphazardly arrested and taken to Hanuman Dhoka Police Station, center of investigation in the heart of Kathmandu. They have been detained till now without food and have been treated inhumanly without having any faults and we, Blue Diamond Society are very concerned." “An attempted Murder of a Meti [cross dressing male] in Kathmandu.” - Activism Photo gallery. - Proposal would have asked all nations to end anti-gay discrimination: "Sumil Pant was on a mission to get to Geneva and nothing was going to stop him. The founder of the Blue Diamond Society, Nepal’s sole gay and lesbian advocacy group, had stories to tell from his country, stories about gay men blackmailed by police and lesbians tortured into marriage. So he boarded a plane in Kathmandu on April 3 [2004] bound for the United Nations Commission on Human Rights to push for passage of the “United Nations Resolution on Sexual Orientation,”..." - Google Search for Information related to "Blue Diamond Society".

Blue Diamond in Kathmandu: Over the last eighteen months, as night falls, Sunil and his colleagues have regularly visited Ratna Park in the centre of Kathmandu, Nepal. They are there not to take the evening air - which is frequently heavily polluted in the Himalayan valley in which it nestles - but to talk to some of the shadowy figures loitering there. They're all men, and they're all looking for one thing - sex. Some are there to buy it, some are there to sell it and some are offering with no payment involved. But they all have one thing in common - they are sexually active with other men in a culture that strongly disapproves of their behaviour. And Ratna Park is one of the few places where they can find each other, particularly if they are young and poor... Many of the sex workers are very young, not necessarily homosexual, but selling sex to keep themselves and sometimes their families alive. As with all the men there, they are at the mercy of the police, thieves and blackmailers who try to attack, rob or cheat them, sometimes following them home, threatening them, asking for "gifts" of money or their watch, and sometimes beating them... Lately the outreach workers have been focusing on blackmailer and police harassment, collecting information and advising the men how to be careful and help each other, show unity if anything happens. If a blackmailer or policeman is seen causing a problem, everyone runs to help the man under threat. The tactic is beginning to work and the police and others are more likely to go for men who have not come in contact with Blue Diamond. That change is proof for the outreach workers that they are on the right track, even though, as Sunil says "what we are doing is a piece of sand in the ocean." Their goal is to help form a community and through that community "ensure that everyone is aware of their right to practise safer sex". But they need more volunteers and more money to cover their expenses when the current grant runs out. They are appealing to new donors, but as yet have had no reply. If you want to help, contact Sunil and see what you can do...

Rapid Ethnography of Male to Male Sexuality and Sexual Health (2001): The study employed a community-based research strategy, using field researchers from the Blue Diamond Society, a nascent community group for men who have sex with men. ..The principal findings of the research are: No distinction is made between men who only have sex with men and men who only have sex with women. Many men said they have sex with men and women, with a high rate of men being married. Little knowledge of HIV/AIDS exists. Safer sex knowledge was limited. Commercial sex between men takes places in a variety of ways, including street-based sex workers. Full Report (PDF Download): Men who have sex with men are generally a hidden population in Nepal and there is little understanding of the social, cultural and behavioral dynamics of their lives as they may relate to HIV transmission and other aspects of sexual health. Whilst community based research elsewhere in South Asia has begun to shed some light on hitherto hidden aspects of male-to-male sexuality, Nepal remains largely unexplored in respect to these concerns. A recent review of current knowledge on HIV epidemiology in Nepal was able to find only one reference to male-to-male sex (Furber, Newell, and Lubben – forthcoming)... Blackmail, extortion, the threat of exposure and coerced sex is a common experience for many men who have sex with men and sex in Kathmandu. For some men forced sex often occurs in the context of their work. Due to a lack of other employment options many men who have sex with men sell sex on the street or in nightclubs and dance bars. All of these circumstances put men who have sex with men in vulnerable sexual situations, increasing their risk of exposure to HIV and other STI’s... The popular discourses framing male-to-male sexual life in Kathmandu bear a marked similarity to those documented elsewhere in South Asia. The most visible population of men who have sex with men (and the most strongly represented in this research) are the meti, these being akin to the kothis who have been described in literature on male-to-male sexuality in India and Bangladesh (Khan 1996, Dowsett 1999). The popular cultural archetype for meti is that they orient their sexual subjectivity around a feminine sensibility and an attraction towards masculine, nominally ‘heterosexual’ men, who are termed ta within meti argot. In certain social contexts such as cruising areas metis often adopt female names and refer to each other using feminine pronouns, although these are used interchangeably with meti’s given male names. On certain occasions (such as parties or whilst working as dancers) some meti wear female attire, often in an exaggerated form involving heavy facial make up and brightly colored clothing. However this attribute is not common to all meti. At other times metis wear conventionally masculine clothes and may appear as more ‘conventional’ men, at least to those who are uninitiated into their sexual culture.,, Publicly most meti purport that they do not have sexual relationships with other meti, as this would be incompatible within the gendered framework around which they construct their sexuality... The popular archetype of ta refers to the stereotypical sexual partners of metis. Ta are akin to the parikh or panthi documented elsewhere in South Asia and are conceptualized as conventionally masculine men, either because they do not display feminine characteristics and do socialise with meti or because of there perceived preference to take the penetrative role in anal sex... The category of dohori is a Nepali equivalent to the duplis or double deckers found elsewhere in South Asia. The term, translated as ‘both ways,’ is used to refer to men who are perceived to or identify themselves as enjoying both insertive and receptive anal sex... Finally it should be noted that the word gay is used by some men who have sex with men in Kathmandu. The number of gay identified men in Kathmandu, who use this term as their primary signifier of sexual subjectivity, is a minority, generally comprising those men who have had exposure to western education...

Gays take on holy cow for AIDS victims. (Alternate Link) - Discrimination and Harassment in Nepal. - Fear for safety/harassment/arbitrary detention. - Aktuelle Infos zu Nepal: Sicherheit von verhafteten Transvestiten (metis), Bedrohung der Blue Diamond Society. - Amnesty Int’l urges protests against mistreatment, rape of Nepalese transgender activists N/A. - Alle 39 Mitglieder der BDS wieder in Freiheit. - Human Rights Watch Nepal gay plea. - Temor por la seguridad / Hostigamiento / Detención arbitraria: Nepal 39 hombres travestis. - Nepal's gays caught between rapes and raids. (Alternate Link) (Alternate Link) (Alternate Link): "Sunil Pant, founder and president of Blue Diamond Society, a Kathmandu-based gay rights organisation, fears this is part of a concerted effort by militant anti-gay groups and individuals to stamp out the recently started gay movement in Nepal. "In the patriarchal Nepalese society, any male person not conforming to accepted norms of masculine behaviour is deemed unworthy and available for exploitation," says Pant. "Though Nepal has a significant homosexual population, the community has been in the closet for a long time due to social stigma and oppression. "Their invisibility lifted to some degree since 2000 when Blue Diamond Society started working with male homosexuals on HIV and AIDS as part of the AIDS control policy of the government. "But now there is a backlash from a section of society still holding on to a mediaeval mindset...""

Pant SB (Blue Diamond Society, 2006). MSM and HIV/AIDS in Nepal. For The Risks and Responsibilities International Consultation on Male Sexual Health and HIVC in Asia and the Pacific. PDF Download. Content/Download Page: "More than 57% of the MSW and 8% MSM have faced some kind of violence in the past 12 months. - More than 37% MSW and 3% MSM were raped and beaten in the last 12 months. - 5% HIV prevalence amongst MSW and 4% amongst MSM in Kathmandu valley. - Metis and gay men have been subjected to harassment, humiliation and abuse by the police, including verbal, physical, and sexual assault, including rape..."

Public Hearing on human rights and sexual orientation (March 29, 2004. Must Scroll): "We are a group of Sexual Minorities who have been marginalized in Nepalese community. From the beginning we’ve been discriminated against and stigmatized not only by the Society but also from our own friends and families. We’ve been disgraced time and time again because there’s no law made to protect us or to give us our rights. Due to our behavior we have faced harassment, torture, rape, verbally abuse, humiliation and blackmail. All this has resulted in sexual minorities (gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered and transvestites) being affected both mentally and physically, even those of us who have not faced such harsh situations directly. The problems don’t stop here: we’re also being denied our rights to education and receiving basic respect and dignified treatment from other people living in the society..."

Sunil Pant, director of Nepal’s only organisation for men who have sex with men, speaks to Gus Cairns about promoting safe sex in the mountain kingdom: "Life in the shadows:  At Ratna you find metas, men who dress and act feminine to attract the tas, johns, masculine guys who like boys. But being a meta in Nepal is a part-time occupation. Here family life is all and there is little cultural sanction for a transsexual way of life that you will find in say Thailand. Ratna Park cruisers, butch and femme alike, are largely married men, living shadow lives away from the glare of the street lamps. Others are younger, and selling sex, often as the only way to keep their families together, sometimes when parents have died (average life expectancy is 57).  And, as Sunil soon discovered, they didn’t know anything about safer sex and HIV, and were taking it home to their wives... But in the last two years, Blue Diamond (blue because it’s the gay colour in Belarus, and diamond, a Buddhist symbol of the enlightened heart) has had queries from 10,000 men. They now run a full programme of events, ranging from regular Saturday movies on gay issues (hence the video shopping) to a free STD clinic. The clinic, a partnership with FHI, Red Cross and the US HIV peer-led complementary therapy organisation FIAR, has given out 23,000 condoms. There are regular discussion groups, and basic education and computer training... Gay life in Nepal is still dangerous. As well as the family shame, there is the constant threat of violence and blackmail from the police, or men who pretend to be police. But the metas have started hitting back... “ We’re a grain of sand in the ocean”, Sunil says. “The security situation, with Maoist guerrillas ruling parts of the country, makes it impossible for men to come in from other areas. It’s even dangerous to travel around town outside daylight hours.” As if founding Nepal’s first gay group was not enough, Sunil has set up an orphanage in his native village for children orphaned by the civil war, for the children of guerrillas and security officers. “I want the next generation to grow up to know each other”. Including, he might add, its gay men."

A Diamond in the Himalayas: Gays find a Voice in Nepal (PDF Download, Trikone Magazine, June 2003): "At the 2002 International Lesbian and Gay Associations meet in Mumbai, there were delegates from all over Asia. But few attracted as much attention as one young man. It was not just because he was a handsome man but also because he offered us a window into a world that many of us knew nothing about—Nepal!... Being gay I knew about cruising spaces
in Nepal. But I found there was nothing else there—no support for men who had sex with men, no groups, nothing. Instead there was a lot of violence against gay men, family pressure to get married and leading double lives... After six months of doing this we decided to form a group... How big is the office? We have a staff of 23 now. We do all kinds of things like developing a hotline and a drop-in center. On Fridays we will have a gay movie. We have an STD clinic and have developed leaflets in local languages in condom usage for MSM sex... Now people are getting more aware. They know that unless you are caught penetrating no one can do anything to you. But once I saw the policeman had pulled out his dick and trapped a guy. I caught them and said that was entrapment. I tell the guys not to be victims and just pay the money. Instead they should scream loudly and ask for help. Otherwise it is terrible. Sometimes these “police” would follow the guy home and then blackmail them. Guys would end up giving them their TV, VCR and refrigerator... But what has the press been like on these issues? It can be very homophobic. I remember three years ago some guys were taken by the police from a disco. They were made to put on drag and makeup in the morning and asked to walk on the streets..."

Gay and happy (by Vikash Pradhan, April, 2003:"Starting off with a lot of prejudices clouding my mind, I was quite apprehensive about the appointment. We met in a small room at the Blue Diamond Society office. I felt uneasy, and out of place, sitting surrounded by six strangers, all of them gay. In the midst of Bhakta, Sujan, Ramesh, Dipak Shrish, and Saphil at a round table, my initial fear and uneasiness vanished as our conversation progressed. They were perfectly comfortable about their sexuality. The term gay does not aptly define the population of Nepali men who have sexual relations with members of their own sex. In Nepal, it is common for men like Sujan and Saphil to have sexual relations with women. In fact, there are many cases where ‘homosexual’ men are married and with children. A better term would be Males having Sex with Males (MSM). In our society where the subject of sex is taboo, there is a stifling silence when it comes to MSMs. We still languish under the misconception that there are no Nepali homosexuals and the rare few we have accepted to be homosexuals are dismissed as freaks of nature.The legal stand towards MSM is more outrageous than our social indifference to the subject. Our earliest written law, framed during the reign of the Ranas and influenced by British Colonial Laws, explicitly states that anal intercourse is a punishable offence. The current law defines and categorises it as an unnatural ‘animal act’. Ironically, masturbation is judged similarly... There are an odd few MSMs who are open about their status, most of whom belong to affluent families. It is with their families’ stoic support that these men proudly take a stand for themselves. But the vast majority still remains in the closet and their families remain ignorant about their sexual preference. This is the sad reality of an MSM: a disconnected existence and the absence of family support. Like in most families, parents of MSMs are unaware of their children’s activities. As a result of which, many MSMs fall into forced matrimony. MSMs, married or not, lead dual lives – one inside the home, as the male figure be it husband or son, and the other amongst fellow MSMs, where they feel comfortable and at ease... We have a large number of MSMs in our midst. BDS is already in contact with over 8000 MSMs. However, the actual figure is much higher since many refuse to admit their status. Another section that goes unaccounted is the migrant workers amongst whom there is a high incidence of MSM.... The few people I was lucky to meet and interact with represented a very small percentage of the valley’s MSM population but I found them gay and happy about their status. They have accepted their sexual preferences and behaviour. We are the one’s who haven’t. Isn’t it time we did?"

Untold Stories Show Growing HIV/AIDS Risks (January 10, 2003): "Seated in the pleasant confines of the Blue Diamond Society here in the Nepali capital, Sunil Panta and his peers voice their frustrations and fears in a society that largely views Kathmandu's gay community as invisible, freakish, or abnormal. They talk about human rights abuse - verbal and physical abuse - rape, torture, blackmail, family apathy and denial, and the individual fear of coming out of the closet. When Sunil frequented cruising sites in and around Kathmandu to seek like-minded individuals to found a support society for homosexuals in 2000, he almost gave up...  Sunil's story is not among those heard in 'Kathmandu: Untold Stories', a film produced by the United Nations Children's Fund that explores the role that society plays in the growing spread of HIV/AIDS in this Himalayan country. But the founder of Blue Diamond Society was instrumental in helping filmmakers Subina Shrestha and Alex Gabbay put together a 26-minute documentary that explores the underbelly of Kathmandu society. They interviewed friends, friends of friends, and met with high-risk, often marginalised groups with the help of the society, the drug rehabilitation centres Richmond Foundation and Freedom Centre, and the Kathmandu-based Life Giving and Life Sustaining Society (LALS), which works with intravenous drug users. " 'Kathmandu: Untold Stories' is not really an HIV/AIDS awareness film in the proper sense," says Shrestha, who conducted the research and wrote the script for the film. "It's more about young people in the city who live secret lives their families know nothing of or don't want to know about. As they tell their stories, it becomes clear how complicated everything is. And how young people are forced into dangerous situations that often expose them to HIV/AIDS," Shrestha adds. One of the interviewees, 27 year-old Kishore Pandey is a government employee, a happily married man who loves his wife and has two children. But Pandey, in his own words, is living a third kind of life. "What do I lack? Why shouldn't I have married? Nobody in my family can tell that I am gay and I could not tell them. I didn't even know myself. I came to know about it much later." ..."

Situation Analysis of HIV/AIDS in Nepal (PDF Download) (Download Page): Men who have sex with men (MSM): "Although homosexuality is said to have existed for centuries in worldly cultures, its open acceptance is still lacking. Nepal may not be an exception to this phenomenon. People of various backgrounds are engaging in same sex relationships in Nepal, most particularly males as noted by various professionals. Some are voluntarily engaging in same sex relationships and committing to sexual acts while others, specifically young boys (i.e. street children) are forced into it. Men who have sex with men are generally perceived to be not at a high risk because there are social sanctions against homosexuality. Situation analysis has highlighted a gap between perception and reality in this issue. Homosexuality is, as stated above, persistent in Nepal. Men are either voluntarily having sex with other men, or forcing little boys (or men) to provide them sexual pleasure (FG, FV). Some are already infected with HIV/AIDS, others with STDs and along with these factors, their sexual behavior with multiple partners or bi-sexual relationships puts them at a risk of HIV infection... Male sex workers are generally unheard of in Nepali popular culture. There is a general disbelief that they do exist. There is a gap in perception and reality on this issue. There are increasing numbers of male sex workers committing to sexual acts with multiple partners, both women and men. This undoubtedly makes them prone to HIV infection. While all of these men engaging in some form of exploited "homosexual" acts may be exposed to general public awareness but because of stigmatization and minimal access to other institutions, they are not necessarily able to protect themselves."

Pilot Condom Distribution Program: Nepal: The FIAR-Blue Diamond Project: "FIAR has been working with the Blue Diamond Society of Kathmandu, Nepal and its director Sunil Babu Pant. FIAR has so far supplied over 45,000 condoms to the program along with 3,500 sachets of water-based lubricant. Mr. Pant, working with Family Health International (FHI), USAID, UNAIDS and other organizations is developing the distribution and safer sex education program Because of this program, FHI now has a plank in its proposed multi-million dollar safer sex/STD campaign for Nepal that includes men who have sex with men (MSM). Until the FIAR-Blue Diamond project was developed, the issue of MSM in Nepal had been completely ignored..."

Homosexuality - Natural or decadent (3rd editorial) - By Bimal Rawal: In Kathmandu, homosexuality is common but discreet and underground. Upon investigation the author discovered a place where homosexuals go "cruising" to pick up partners. Group of homosexuals meet but they are not organised and extremely afraid of the society... For a lesbian girl life can be extremely traumatic - years ago a local paper published an article about two girls who committed suicide because they did not want to be separated - perhaps they were lesbian girls but the society did not give them a chance to live their lives the way they wanted to.

Homosexuality in Nepal?? N/A "I am glad TND and SCN are beginning to talk about homosexuality in Nepal. Few points have stood out: The paucity of any data of any studies taken and the confusion of the term in the Nepali context. Because data from scientific or even anthropological studies are missing(after all anthro are too busy contructing a romantic notion of pre-modern Nepal of noble savages like the Gurungs and Sherpas that they not interested in finding modern social "diseases" in their Shangri-la) we have some anecdotal info volunteered. These anecdotal info lead to the confusion of definition of homosexuality in nepal. If homosexuality is defined as same-sex sexual and social relationship only, I think there is plenty of that going on in nepal, among boarding schools, chowks, rodi-ghars, monks, army, and other same-sex social institutions where access to partners of other sex. " (!994 Letter to The nepal Digest)

Homosexuality in Nepal: (Must Scroll, 1994) "I cannot claim any sort of expertise on the subject but can offer certain anecdotal comments regarding homosexual activity in Nepal that I've gathered over several years of living here. So, for what it's worth... An American homosexual friend of mine here in Kathmandu has had a couple of Nepali boyfriends and tells me that there is a great deal of activity among men. He claims that his lovers have told him that perhaps 80% of Nepali men have had some sort of homosexual experience by the time they reach age 18. Given the cultural restrictions in Nepal which prohibit heterosexual contact prior to marraige, this is perhaps not so unusual (I believe this phenomenon is evidenced in many Muslim cultures as well). I suppose one could question whether this is actually "homosexuality" in any sort of meaningful sense, or rather just adolescent experimentation and making the best of a difficult situation. However, homosexual activity among adult males does not seem to be altogether uncommon. On the other hand, I would venture a guess that homosexual activity among adult women in Nepal is extremely rare. My wife has asked some of her closest Nepali friends about it and the mere CONCEPT just blew their minds! None of them had ever known or heard of a lesbian Nepali woman and some refused to believe that lesbianism existed ANYWHERE! But, like I say, my information is anecdotal. (!994 Letter to The nepal Digest)

Nepal Situation of Child Ragpickers: A Rapid Assessment (PDF Download): "Manoj, a ragpicker in Dharan, admits that ragpickers are involved in sexual activities among themselves, calling it Jot Maareko (slang word of homosexual sex), and sometimes visit prostitutes.

Lives Disrupted: (Originally from Los Angeles Times) "...And homosexuality which once existed only in an intensely covert way, has all but come out of the closet in Nepal, with male trekkers from the West, like female trekkers, finding Sherpa romances. - 1st Kathmandu International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Film Festival.

Abstracts: - Challenge in implementing HIV/AIDS/STD in the prisons in Kathmandu, Nepal. - Vulnerable populations in Nepal face hostile environment. - A systematic review of current knowledge of HIV epidemiology and of sexual behaviour in Nepal. (Full Text).

Gurung G (2004). Knowledge and Attitude on HIV/ AIDS and Sexual Behaviour of Street Teenagers in Kathmandu Valley. Journal of Nepal Health Research Council, 2(2): 9-13. PDF Download. "An overwhelming majority (70%) of the teenagers had multiple sexual partners. Both quantitative as well as qualitative findings confirmed existence of homosexual relationship, though minimal in number."

Resource Links: - Gay Nepal (Global Gayz): - News/Reports: 2003 to Present. - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden. - Sodomy Laws: Nepal.

Blue Diamond Society. - Nepal Queer Society: search. (Related, 1995: Gays organize in Nepal N/A). - Meeting place for gay and bisexual Nepalese. - Nepal: A Himalayan Odyssey Tour Operator: Footprints Travel. - Utopia. - GayRice. - StickyRice. - Google Directory

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

SRI LANKA: - Sri Lanka's gays share their journey: (Alternate Link) "When Sujeewa told his older brother he was gay, he beat him up and chased him out of the house. That was eight years ago, since when Sujeewa has started helping out at Companions on a Journey, Sri Lanka's only society for gay men and women. Companions now have two more drop-in centres in Sri Lanka, one in Kandy and one in Anuradhapura. They put out a monthly newsletter and every full moon they organise a big party...  - Rosanna Flamer Caldera talks about life in Sri Lanka and gives a resumé on the status of LGBT rights in the UN. - Tsunami kills 36 gay activists in Sri Lanka. - Columbo Pride 2007. - EQUAL GROUND launched its Human Rights publication titled “Human, Right?” at the Barefoot Gallery in Colombo, Sri lanka, on 17th May 2005.

In Sri Lanka, sexual orientation puts gays at risk: In her native Sri Lanka, a land of sandy beaches licked by the emerald-hued waters of the Indian Ocean, Rosanna Flamer-Caldera almost lost her wrestling match with homosexuality when she attempted suicide in her teens. With no one to turn to in a country that considers homosexuality a criminal offence, death seemed the better alternative. Attempting suicide, however, wound up saving her...This year, Flamer-Caldera, 51, will march at the head of Toronto's Pride Parade as its international grand marshal, to underscore queer rights around the world.

Sri Lankan Homosexuals Come Out of the Closet. - Sri Lanka gays mark anniversary with ball (Alternate Link). - Sri Lanka-gays: Sri Lanka gays mark five years of protest in drag. - Sri Lankan lesbians stand up and fight. - Lesbian Activism in Sri Lanka. - The Women's Support Group is the only Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender women's organisation in Sri Lanka. - Sri Lankan Gays See Progress, However Slow N/A. - Different Views and Experiences on Covering Homosexuality: Sri Lanka. - Activists from Sri Lanka, Jamaica & Chile To Be Honored

Sri Lanka's Gays Join South Asian Fight for Rights. - Sri Lanka reviewing morality laws. - Asian gays fight back against Victorian laws: "Sri Lanka's penal code outlaws sex between men, but technically lesbianism is not an offence because the Victorian law does not assume it is possible for women to have sex with each other." - Should Homosexuality Be Legalized in Sri Lanka? - Sri Lanka's gays battle to change penal code. - Being Fearful and Boldly Gay in Sri Lanka. - Former trainee priest leads Sri Lanka's gay battle to come out. - Sri Lanka gays mark five years of protest in drag.

National Lesbian Conference in Sri Lanka Planned (1999) N/A. - 60 Attend Sri Lankan Gay Conference. - A 3-year-old lesbian and gay group in Sri Lanka has appealed to government to lift punitive anti-homosexuality laws N/A. - Sri Lankan Activists Move for Sodomy Law Repeal N/A.- Sri Lanka: Treatment of homosexual men by the authorities, the Muslim community, and the broader community; laws proscribing homosexual acts and whether they are applied in practice (1997 - November 2000). - Sri Lankan Activists Push Gay Rights, Dowry Change. - Homosexuality in Sri Lanka. - Island Fever: A tropical paradise wakes up late to AIDS. (Alternate Link) - Battling twin taboos in Sri Lanka: Homosexuality is illegal in Sri Lanka The founder of a group to help people affected by Aids in Sri Lanka is battling two stigmas in his home country - of being both openly gay and HIV positive. - Musician jailed for flirting with 'boy'. (Alternate Link) - Sri Lanka's Beach Boys: Soft Targets for HIV.

Sri Lankan Coming to Terms with Gays-Group: (Alternate Linkl) ABC News, 05/23/2001 10:50 am ET . Prejudice runs deep but prudish Sri Lanka is slowly coming to terms with homosexual behavior, the country's tiny gay rights movement said on Wednesday. "We've come a long way. We are proud to say that we've come through a horrible, inhuman, indecent, vicious period," said Sherman de Rose, executive director of Companions on a Journey..." - Lanka lesbians find a new home

Haven in Sri Lanka for gay men and women: "I am very much shocked and I think the entire community is because we were trying to figure out why if Gay rights are also part of human rights, and if all the U-N agencies who are supporting these initiatives. For example the HIV projects  are being funded mainly by the U-N agencies, and not a single mention of homosexual programmes or activities are designed to meet the needs of homosexual men and women in this country. Whereas they have gone to the extent of including beach boys and prostitutes into their programmes. But gay men are neglected... The law is being misused and as far as we are concerned, as far as it has gone about to our notice, the police officers, they are blackmailing gay and lesbians, they are being beaten up in the streets, in meeting places, the toilets, the beaches. And also some of them are being thrown out of their homes. And we have clear evidence of that. Some of them have been thrown out of their workplaces."

Opening Citizenship: Civil Society and Queer Networks in Sri Lanka. - Sri Lanka National Gay Web Site: Ayubowan! N/A (Archive Link) Welcome to Sri Lanka! With this traditional greeting, which is a wish that you may have the gift of long life, we welcome you to Sri Lanka-the Resplendent Land. - Coming Out: Shyam Selvadurai set up house with his boyfriend in his native Sri Lanka - a land where homosexuality is officially outlawed.

Sri Lanka Press Council Praises Anti-Gay Violence: "Human rights advocates and women's groups reacted furiously to praise the Sri Lankan Press Council lavished on an article urging that convicted rapists should be unleashed on lesbians and branding lesbianism an act of sadism." - Lesbian Activism in Sri Lanka: "The stigma associated with being lesbian or gay in Sri Lanka can sometimes spill over into physical, emotional, mental, and sexual violence against individuals." - Sri Lanka's Press Council Abomination. - Sri Lanka gay group denounces attacks: An association representing the gay and lesbian community in Sri Lanka says its members have been subjected to horrible, inhuman, indecent and vicious treatment in the five years since it was established. The organisation, known as Companions on a Journey, has just won an international award for its work and has begun to assist the Sri Lankan Government in its Aids awareness work...

You And AIDS: Sri Lanka: "Although the number of cases reported falls short of the projections made some years ago, the number of new infections, reported from January 1, 98 to December 1, 1998, were 52. The number was 29 over the same period during the previous year. The reason for this substantial increase might be because of improved reporting. The reported seroprevalence of 37 per 100, 000 (Sept.'98) is probably lower than the actual prevalence. Infection is mainly heterosexual (84%), followed by homosexual transmission (8%). Update: "The first case of HIV infection was reported in 1986 and the cumulative total reported at the end of 2004 was 614. Of these 363 were male and 251 were female. The reported number of deaths due to AIDS was 131 as of end 2004...- Country Report: HIV/AIDS. - Sri Lanka hosts Asia/Pacific HIV conference. -Low AIDS figures despite years of conflict. - Sri Lanka's low official Aids stats are questioned.

Country Report, Sri Lanka, 2006 (PDF Download):  National Survey on Emerging Issues among Adolescents in Sri Lanka: 18.2% of in-school boys aged 14-19 reported “homosexual relations” (N=4664). 13.0% of out-of-school boys aged 15-19 reported “homosexual relations” (N=5042).  Results or other studies given. MSM identity is complex because MSM refers to behaviour: some gay men marry due to social and cultural pressure. there are MSM who consider themselves straight but have sex with men. MSM face harassment from law enforcement in cruising areas as well as extortion of money and forced sex; violence against MSM impacts negatively on their sexual and emotional health. Poverty and exposure to sexual violence leads men to work as sex workers...

Perera B, Reece M (2006). Sexual behavior of young adults in Sri Lanka: Implications for HIV prevention. AIDS Care, 18(5): 497-500 (Abstract). "Using a cross-sectional design, data were collected from 3,134 higher secondary school (grades 12 and 13) students between the ages of 1820 in six geographically representative districts of Sri Lanka... Homosexual relationships of the participants were not examined extensively in this study, but data on some aspects of same gendered sexual relationships were collected. Twenty female students (1.1%) and 138 (10%) male students reported that they had a same gendered partner at the time of the study (x2 (1, 3134)/126.1, pB/0.001). With regard to past sexual experiences, less than 1% of female students (n/14), but 13.1% of male students (n/180) reported that they had engaged in oral sex with a same gender partner (x2 (1, 3134)/199.1, pB/ 0.01). About 20% (n/279) of male students reported having had inter-femoral sex with a male parter." It is also reported that 17.7% of males (age = 17), 21.7% of males (age = 18) and 22.9% of males (age = 19) reported having experienced anal sex with at leat one other male.

Miller J (2002). Violence and Coercion in Sri Lanka's Commercial Sex Industry: Intersections of Gender, Sexuality, Culture, and the Law. Violence Against Women, 8(9): 1044-1073 (Abstract): "The nachchi interviewed for the project provided a somewhat different picture of their entrée into commercial sex. Most notable for them was the early onset of sexual behavior as children with older boys or adult men. Nearly half of the nachchi were first introduced to sex when they were younger than the age of 10, and the average age for the sample of nachchi was 11. Nearly two thirds were first sexually abused by an adult or youngmanat least 10 years their senior.16 Many of the nachchi described being like girlsaschildr en and said that othersr esponded to them as such. For example, Romesh said, “From a small age onwards I did not like to act like a boy. . . . In my heart I’m like a girl. A sI was growing up, everybody started calling me nangi, chutie [terms of endearment for girls].” As they grew older, they were singled out by older boysand men and coerced or enticed into sexual activities. In most cases, nachchi’s early sexual activities led them to drift into commercial sex, initially informally. In a few cases, they described men in the community offering the small enticement of a few rupees; in other cases, they came to meet other nachchi as teenagers and learned that they could earn money for selling their sexual services. Only two nachchi described initially being pimped by a friend or boyfriend, and two initially earned money for the family as children through informal sexual exchanges. Most at least initially found selling sex ameans of meeting sexual partners and exploring their sexuality; however, they ultimately described selling sex for economic purposes rather than for pleasure... Nachchi sex workers... faced widespread violence not just when they were working but whenever they were in public and in their communities as well. The stigma they faced was not generated by the fact that they were selling sex but because they are nachchi. As one nachchi put it, “They say we are an insult to male kind.” ... Nachchi also reported widespread harassment and abuse by the police, but unlike women, they were rarely charged and produced to the courts. Instead, they were robbed and often forced to provide sexual services..." Some nachchi experiences: "Somebody would come in a car, some thugs would come and drag usand go. They beat and beat usand they form queues[poling daanawa, i.e., gang rape]. They torment a lot. They say they will cut the mouth, will cut that [penis], tell they will kill, show knives. So lots of things like that we have faced... Two from the army got me in a vehicle. So because it was army, I did not fear. After I got in, they turned into a corner and told me to stay. When I was sucking, he said, “Don’t go like that, I want the backside.” So I said, “I have not been with anybody that way.” WhenI said I can’t stay like that, by force he did tome. . . . Inmylife, I may have faced a lot of suffering but have not borne such pain as that. I screamed, and the other one held my mouth. Then the other one also stayed [raped me]."

Items reporting/commenting on the sexual availability of boys - some called "beach boys" -  in Sri Lanka and related issues: - My Good Experiences in Sri Lanka. & Personal Comment: a gay traveler's cautionary note. - A Situational Analysis of Child Sex Tourism in Sri Lanka (PDF Download). - Expert Meeting on: Sexual Abuse of Children, Child Pornography and Paedophilia on the lnternet: an international challenge (PDF Download). - Sri Lanka: The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: A Rapid Assessment (PDF Download). - Case study on the effects of tourism on culture and the environment (PDF Download). - Sexually Abused and Sexually Exploited Children and Youth in South Asia: A Qualitative Assessment f their Health Needs and Available Services (PDF Download). - Intersecting risks: HIV/AIDS and Child Labour (PDF Download). - National Centre in HIV Social Research: Annual Report 2006 (PDF Download).

Funny boy: a novel by Shyam Selvadurai - A marvelous first novel, about growing up gay in Sri Lanka. - About the Author: Shyam Selvadurai. - Funny Boy - 1994 - by Shyam Selvadurai (9 Sample Pages) (Review) - I am often asked about how my books are received in Sri Lanka. This review helps answer that question. Related Paper: "Writing Sri Lanka, Reading Resistance: Shyam Selvadurai’s Funny Boy and A. Sivanandan’s when Memory Dies" - [Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 39(1), 2004: 5-18.]

Swimming in the Monsoon Sea - 2005 - by Shyam Selvadurai (Review). - Boys Finding First Love: Soul-searching in The Center of the World and Swimming in the Monsoon Sea.-Shyam Selvadurai’s ‘Swimming’ Debut. - Plavání v monzunovém moři.

It’s about our lives - A queer Anthology Project: "Companions on a journey are in the process of compiling and publishing an anthology of queer writings from Sri Lanka. Submissions are now accepted for this anthology, of which the main aim is attempting to put together writings on queer sexuality from life based experiences as well as conceptual viewpoints on the subject.Once published this anthology will serve as a testimony of everyday personal and political struggles of gay/lesbian/transgendered, bi-sexual people of Sri Lankan society. It could also serve as a personal reflection on leading a queer life in Sri Lanka, which can be construed as a daily political resistance of a personal kind..." - It's about their lives: "Companions on a journey are in the process of compiling and publishing an anthology of queer writings from Sri Lanka with the aim of putting together writings on queer sexuality from life based experiences as well as conceptual viewpoints on the subject... Companions invite submissions on any topic, be it love, sex, heartbreak, homophobia, marriage, family, social spaces, friendships, spirituality, resistance, violence, coming out, betrayals, bitching or cat fighting, anything that makes the writer's experience unique, as who he or she is, but request that the artiste should deal with queerness and non-heterosexual orientation. "There are no literary pretensions about this anthology project. Our aim is to put out something on the bookshelves, which Sri Lankans can read, relate and understand easily," says Sherman de Rosa, who adds that as there are no pre-established accepted ways of writing, one does not need be a previously published writer to submit entries."  "Frankly, it doesn't matter whether your writing is good or bad, has we know that there exists lot of variations in between these two poles of being good or bad or even being mediocre", Rosa explains. Submissions can be made by Sri Lankans living in Sri Lanka or residing abroad and the artistes can be in English, Sinhalese or Tamil. One can use a pseudonym or a pen name if he or she is not comfortable in writing under his/her own name.

No stray dogs - An empowerment programme in Sri Lanka: PDF Download, Must scroll (Alternate Link). "The sex workers are very much concerned with their personal empowerment. I was informed by the male sex workers who attended a workshop organised by Companions on a Journey (a project aimed at gays in Sri Lanka) of their concern of their own future. They raised the issue of being rejected by their clients for a younger sex worker or for one with ‘a better personality’. They insist on alternative skills development training to achieve personal empowerment. I hope and believe that this strategy will be addressed in all projects targeting sex workers. As a lot of economically underprivileged members of the gay community in Sri Lanka earn their living as male sex workers, we must pay attention to their needs whilst designing programmes and include them in programme designing as well as programme implementation processes."

Sri Lanka - Demographic Characteristics of Adolescents: "Sexual behaviour. School Principals had indicated that there are much reproductive health-related behaviour among school adolescents such as adolescent love affairs, elopement, premarital sex, premarital pregnancy, homosexual relationships, patronising prostitutes, rape, abortion, suicides and addiction to smoking and drugs (Family Planning Association of Sri Lanka)." - Climate of denial leaves young people in the dark: "Athula says his mother had discussed the dangers of same-sex relationships because so many homosexual tourists came to Sri Lanka. But they had never discussed irresponsible sexual behaviour."

Books by Stephen Lock: "The use of the terms "gay" and "homosexual" as they apply to the Tamil and Sinhalese is, as Selvadurai points out, problematic. Same-sex behavior occurs, but within a cultural and community context. The concept of "gay" is very much a Western concept. He explains that given the Hindu and Muslim ethic pervading Sri Lanka, as well as Anglican influences inherited from the Crown Colony era, heterosexual sex for single males is generally unavailable. Many men, therefore, do engage in same-sex activity, but this is often couched in strict gender roles. It is the passive or receptive partner who is perceived as "the faggot," says Selvadurai, while the insertive partner retains his masculinity and his heterosexual identity and status."

Lube for Sri Lanka: "In fact, a lot of gay and bisexual women organised a conference in 1999 and they got some good press coverage about it but following that there was some very damning letters to the editor who referred to these women as jaded but jubilant jezebels. […] What that has done is often bring out a lot of hostility, not necessarily from people on the street, but in terms of some institutions, either the government or the media, some very hostile things, which have been the result of further violence and threats of violence against gay men and bisexual men […] in the country. […]"

Rivers K, and Aggleton P (1999). Adolescent Sexuality, Gender and the HIV Epidemic. Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London. Internet: "While male-to-male sex exists in every culture, the activities concerned are rarely understood as "homosexual" still less as "gay" (McKenna, 1996). More likely than not, they will not be widely talked about, or named only within local vernaculars often inaccessible to outsiders (Aggleton, Khan and Parker, 1998). That said, in many countries of the world a not insubstantial number of young men have their first sexual experience with other men, and for some this may be the beginning of a longer lasting bisexual behavioural repertoire. For example, 50 per cent of male university students recently interviewed in Sri Lanka reported that their first sexual experience had been with another man (Silva et al, 1997), and there are well documented studies of behavioural bisexuality among men in countries as diverse as the Philippines (Tan, 1996), India (Khan, 1996), Morocco (Bourshaba et al, 1998), Brazil (Parker, 1996), the Dominican Republic (de Moya and Garcia, 1996) and Peru (Cáceres, 1998). While it would be quite wrong to see male bisexuality as a purely "adolescent" phenomenon or triggered by men's lack of access to women, the restrictions many cultures place on socialisation between the sexes may have an important role to play in facilitating this alternative means of sexual expression."

The sexual abuse of men in detention in Sri Lanka, Lancet 2000. - Male prisoners allege homosexual abuse: One of the world's oldest and most respected medical journals, The Lancet, Volume 355 (no. 9220), 10 June 2000, pp 2069, published in the U.K. has carried a scathing report of sexual abuse of male prisoners by the Sri Lankan authorities.

Sri Lanka gay website: - News. -  Introductoion to Gay Life. - Cruising in Colombo: The following is for those who MUST cruise... - Why they marry? - Homosexuality, Buddhism and Srilankan Society. - Creative Page.

Resource Links: - Utopia. - GayRice. - Sri Lankan Gay Friends:. - Lesbian and Gay Sri Lanka. - GLBT Support Groups

Resource Links: - Gay Sri Lanka (Global Gayz): - News/Reports. - ILGA Report- Sodomy Laws: Sri Lanka.

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

PAKISTAN - Gay Pakistan: 'less inhibited than West' (Alternate Link): In this column a gay man in Pakistan talks about the advantages of being gay there compared to the West. He prefers to remain anonymous... I have come out to most of my family, with their loving support. I have also come out to all my friends, and rarely meet anyone aggressively hostile to gay individuals. I have lived with a lover independently without anyone raising an eyebrow. I have attended gay parties more uninhibited than any I have seen in the West. In fact, I cannot remember a single occasion in almost 10 years that I have felt threatened with regards to my sexuality in Pakistan. An entirely unrepresentative experience to be sure, as far as the experience of a majority of Pakistanis is concerned. But there is no representative sample that I can think of... I would not for a moment suggest that it is easy being gay in Pakistan... - First gay 'marriage' in Pakistan: On hearing of the wedding, a tribal council told the pair to leave the area or be killed for breaking religious and tribal "values and ethics"... A local Urdu-language newspaper said the elder man, named as Liaquat Ali, had taken a local boy called Markeen as "his male bride"...  - Man Sexually Assaulted in Pakistan After Refusing to Convert to Islam: Lawyers in Pakistan are investigating a report that up to 30 men tortured and gang-raped a young Christian man for refusing to convert to Islam. - Hijiras Party On in Lahore, Pakistan. - Chapati Mystery » Eye on Queer Pakistan:

Gay pride rising in Pakistan: Gay groups say their communities are doing well with subtle acceptance from society. A gay man from Karachi said: "In a bizarre way homosexuality is condemned but not opposed, there is an indulgence here, a cultural ability to live and let live." - Open Secrets: Gay Life in Pakistan: During my first trip to Pakistan in 2006, I found the country teeming with homosexuals.... These were just few of the queer moments of my Pakistan excursion. While returning back to Lahore on the Allama Iqbal Express train, a Bahawalpur trader suddenly confessed in the midst of our Musharraf conversations that he liked sleeping with boys! ... Indeed it is difficult to conceive Pakistan as a place where individuals could be free to celebrate sex, and different sexual orientations. But that is what everyone seems to do... In fact, in the conservative regions of North Western Frontier Province it is socially acceptable for Pashtun men to take up young boys for sexual pleasure. But don't rush to fancy the country as some liberal San Francisco outpost where life is all about celebrating individual choices... - When She Speaks, He’s Breaking All of Islam’s Taboos: In a country where publicly talking about sex is strictly off limits, Mr. Saleem has managed not only to bring up the subject on his prime-time television talk show — but to do so without stirring a backlash from fundamentalist Islamic clerics. And he has done so as a woman... Colorful and witty, Mr. Saleem is open about his own sexuality and sprinkles his conversation with gender-bending phrases...

Alleged same-sex couple freed in Pakistan:  Pakistan's Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the release of a transman and his wife jailed in May for perjury. Female-to-male transsexual Shumail Raj, 31, and his wife Shahzina Tariq, 24, were sent to jail when a Lahore court ruled Raj was still biologically a woman despite two surgeries... - Homosexuality in Pakistan: "My life is a lie and I know it," the 24-year-old fine arts student told IRIN. "But this is the reality of Pakistan and this is the reality I have to live." For thousands of gay people in Pakistan today, that reality is repeated again and again... Gay men living in the larger cities such as Lahore, Karachi or the capital, Islamabad, fare slightly better in the mildly more tolerant atmosphere of urban areas. Here they enjoy higher levels of education and many hold well-paid professional jobs. Those living in impoverished rural areas remain closeted together fearing the extreme conservatism of their villages...  - Gender Identity And Homophobia In Pakistan.

Gays in Pakistan: (Alternate Link) (Alternate Link) (Alternate Link) Open Secrets: In Pakistan, sex between men is strictly forbidden by law and religion. But even in the most conservative regions, it's also embedded in the society... Yet this is also the region of Pakistan where homosexuality is most tolerated -- however quietly. Among the Pashtun majority, having a young, attractive boyfriend is a symbol of prestige and wealth for affluent middle-aged men. Indeed, Pashtun men often keep a young boy in their hujra, the male room of the house that the wife rarely enters. The practice is so common that there are various slang terms for the boyfriends in different regional languages: larke (boy), warkai, alec. According to many people interviewed in Peshawar, there's a strict code of behavior in these relationships. The boy is always the passive partner in sex and has often been coerced into the relationship; he is given food and clothes by his partner, and is in many cases forbidden to leave the relationship or marry. (In theory, the boys could marry when they're grown, but they are generally considered damaged, and end up wandering the streets as outcasts.).. Sex between men is also commonplace in Pakistan's gender-segregated madrassas, or religious schools..."

Gay Pakistan: A Complex Society. - Is there anyone for my Help - appeal from Khawar Shafi. - America’s Middle East Allies Tyrannize Gays and Women. - The Pink Purdah of Pakistan: In Pakistan it must be easy for homosexual women to avoid punishments for adultery — penetration being essential for imposition of Section 377 of the Pakistan Penal Code. Even then, Shumail and Shahzina, two women married to each other, are not to be envied. They have been sentenced to three years in jail.

Taboo TV comes to Pakistan living rooms: (Alternate Link) In South Asian cultures, where airing one's dirty laundry in public has long been considered uncouth, open discussion of issues such as incest, rape, women's rights, homosexuality and child abuse is taboo. But not for "Drama Hour," which has covered divisive issues such as second wives, divorce and marriage for love versus arranged marriages. Each week viewers get an understanding-driven treatment of sensitive social issues that, while often poorly filmed and acted out with over-the-top melodrama (accompanied by unbelievably cheesy soundtracks), try to promote a moderate, tolerant outlook. "It's all about exploring and examining who we are and how we want to live," says Lahore social worker Humaira Qureshi. "To move forward, we as an entire society have to take a deep look inside at painful, unpleasant issues and decide what we want for ourselves and our children."

The Prince is Gay: I’m gay, have always been and probably will remain so. Yet, I did not choose to be gay. When people, especially homophobic males, talk disparagingly of gays or use slurs, I cannot understand it because it is not a habit I acquired. My fascination for the male body goes a long way back to Kindergarten. My foggy childhood memories are warm with tender hugs from grown-up adult men. A naked thigh, chest or armpit made my heart beat faster... Middle and lower-middle classes are more relaxed and comfortable with homosexuality. The upper classes, paranoid beyond description are most comfortable in their closets. The tragedy is that even when they know about each other’s sexual orientation they cannot talk about it openly... Suddenly there are new barriers between us, which I cannot cross or perhaps I don’t want to cross. They mustn’t know. They will never know. For them I am a grown up man now, no longer Nira’s little boy. I am not sure even if they remember the warm memories. Now I am their prince who will marry a princess someday. Amen. No one will tell them. Their Prince is gay.

The Invisible Men: (Alternate Link) I recall that when I was just nine years old, I fell in love with one of my father’s colleagues I just loved being close to him. I remember once he was repairing his car and his shirt was open I was mesmerized by his hairy chest I stood there in awe for quite some time. He smiled but was unaware that I was enormously attracted to his masculine physique. During my school days I had two friends who shared similar feelings about men. There was also a group of gay bashers who used to call us 'homos'. I started liking the school team captain. That was when I realized that I was different. Eventually I found more like minded guys at university. We talked about men, their physiques, their hairy chests, but never confessed our secret encounters It is considered bad to have sex with a man especially if you are the 'bottom'...

Gay life in Pakistan (Alternate Link): Being a gay you can always get sex in Pakistan. You can go to gay spots, which are usually public parks, bus stops and restaurants etc. You can pick guys from there or get picked by some one. Pakistani police not often takes action against people practicing homosexuality in private. What you can't do in Pakistan is to say loudly that you are gay and you think that it is ok to be a gay. You can't talk about religion and homosexuality, you should not feel proud of your sexual orientation, you must remain careful when you are at public places and so on....

Pakistan sitting on a ticking AIDS bomb: While there is little documentation about the extent to which men engage in sexual activity with other men in Pakistan, the limited evidence available suggests that such activity does occur throughout the country.  Anecdotal evidence indicates that sexual activity between men occurs relatively frequently in boys’ hostels and jails; additionally, research suggests that sex between men is often practiced among long distance truck drivers. Finally, there is a small but highly mobile population of transvestites, transsexuals and eunuchs known as the hijra, who are known to engage in unsafe sexual practices. Lahore had an estimated 38,000 MSM in 2002. The MSM community is heterogeneous and includes Hijras (biological males who are usually fully castrated), Zenanas (transvestities who usually dress as women) and masseurs. Many sell sex and have multiple sexual partners. - HIV/AIDS among men who have sex with men in Pakistan.

To Be Gay and Muslim by Heidi Dietrich: "He spent his early years in Pakistan, where his only introduction to gays was the hijras: hermaphrodites who dress in women's clothing and perform at weddings... Beyond the hijras, gay relationships are kept in the closet in Pakistan... Durrani grew up in Pakistan and came to the United States at age 22. He says that in Pakistan, sex among men is common, but they don't label themselves as gay. As long as the men marry and have children - fulfilling their duties -- they can sleep around on the side Ghalib Dhalla explained that it depends on who is administering the sexual act. "If I get blown, I'm not gay," Dhalla said." -

Taboos Still Hamper AIDS Programme: "Though the study shows that homosexual activity accounts for only two percent of cases, it adds that this is common in large areas of thecountry. According to Masroor Gillani, a researcher with the Society for the Protection of the Rights of Child, both government and society have been slow in admitting widespread male homosexuality and child sexual abuse."  - Report on The 3rd International Retreat for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning Muslims & Their Friends: "Adnan Ali explained that in Pakistan, people deny the issue. They say that homosexuality does not exist in Pakistan. Due to this condition, it is very difficult to discuss the issue of homosexuality. It is important now to raise the issue in the media." - Refuge from the stones: Mohammed Syed says his sexuality puts his life in danger back home and he prays that Canada will grant him sanctuary. Trouble is, so many asylum seekers now are claiming to be gay when they're not. (Alternate Link)

Community Knowledge, Attitude and Practices regarding Sexually Transmitted Infections in a Rural District of Pakistan: "While health care providers believed that the prevalence of sexually transmitted infections is high, the community did not consider themselves at risk. The community believed that these diseases are a problem among a sub-population of male adolescents, especially those who have homosexual relations. However, due to social norms, they rarely discussed such health problems with other family members or elders... Risk groups for sexually  transmitted infections include women of childbearing age, homosexuals and heterosexuals practising unsafe sex and prison inmates... Male respondents, on the other hand, revealed that STIs might probably be more common in younger males, mostly among those who were having homosexual contacts. Informants perceived that homosexuality among teenage boys was common... While male community members did point to homosexuality being common among teenage boys, they could not envisage a link between homosexuality and STIs other than AIDS. At the same time, it needs to be noted that in the present cultural context boys rarely share their reproductive health problems with their elders.

Homosexual Immigration / Lesbian and Gay Immigrants are Changing New York (Alternate Link): "Saeed Rahman remembers being "mystified by how the bar scene worked" when he arrived from Pakistan in 1991. "And dating," he says, "is still a mystery to me." Back home, "you become friends with someone and move on from there. Here you experience sexual tension as a prelude to getting into bed together." Leaping into the bars can also have devastating effects for those not familiar with HIV prevention, and much organizing among gay immigrants began when HIV educators started to develop culturally specific safer-sex materials for communities that feared the INS as much as the virus itself. While the INS won't act against people with HIV who are already here legally, the U.S. refuses entry to those who are positive, and denies permanent residency to them."

Land of the free: my perspective: " My ethnic group, the Baluch, inhabit southwest Pakistan and parts of Iran and Afghanistan. In my culture, being exclusively or passively gay makes a man a social outcast. A Baluchi saying goes, "For a man everything is all right, other than being a thief or gay," meaning he takes the passive role in anal sex. Interestingly, being quietly bisexual--as long as a man takes the active sex role--is OK. Many Pakistani males have sex with other men. Yet Pakistan is one of the nine countries of the world where a man may be sentenced to death for gay sex. I knew I was gay since I was a teenager and suffered in silence for 25 years..."

Javed Iqbal: Chains: "It was there, the twice-divorced father of two would ater claim, that he collected teenage boys whom he took to his three-room flat on Ravi Road to work as his servants.  Such arrangements are not ncommon in the subcontinent. Although the Koran strictly forbids homosexual relations and is even stricter when it comes to pedophilia, many older men regularly  take young boys to be their lovers and servants. In fact, in places like the Northwest frontier provinces of Pakistan, not far from Lahore, such relationships are “a matter of pride,” or a “symbol of social status” for the lder men, according to a 1997 survey conducted by Pakistan’s National Coalition for Child Rights. Poems have been written about the love between a man and his servant. And while not usually discussed in polite company, the practice is generally understood and even ccepted in other parts of both Pakistan and Afghanistan as well, the survey found.

South Asian Review of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: Pakistan Study Report 2001 (PDF Download): Boy prostitutes can be found in all parts of Pakistan, despite the fact that homosexuality is condemned by the society and Islam. Poverty, a history of sexual abuse, family circumstances and friends are usually the forces that lead many youngsters into the profession. Boy prostitutes are commonly found in small wayside hotels and at bus stands. The prime ages of male prostitutes are 15 to 25 years, but they can also be as young as 13 years. Usually the male prostitutes work under a pimp who brings in clients and pays for police protection... In the NWFP, some wealthy and elderly people customarily keep young attractive boys for sexual pleasure. In order to understand this attitude, a study was commissioned by National Coalition for Child Rights, Unicef-Peshawar and some NWFP CBOs in 1997. It revealed that 23% of the population in the [North West Frontier] province considers pedophilia a matter of pride, 14% a symbol of status while another 11% does not consider it bad...

South Asian Review of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: Pakistan Study Report 2001 (PDF Download): Another study reports us that certain public places are increasingly becoming high risk for children, especially boys... Cinema halls, especially those exhibiting pornographic films, have also been identified in this report as places where child prostitution is flourishing... A more serious but unexplored form of CSA is the institutionalized prostitution of boys in the transport industry. Young boys are often employed as assistants by truckers who then expect them to provide them with sexual services. Several micro studies have also shown that madrassas (places of religious education) are also high-risk places for children. Older students and sometimes, even instructors, have been accused of sexual excesses against children... The sexual abuse of children has been found to be prevalent in jails. This statement in a prison survey report, conducted by Dr. Semeen Alam in 1993 on Punjab jails, has also been established through informal NGO visits to jails all over the country. Children were found to be sexually abused not only by older inmates but also by the administrative staff..

Male Brothels: - South Asian Review of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: Pakistan Study Report 2001 (PDF Download): On 21 October 1998, police in a sting operation raided 56 male prostitution dens and arrested 95 boy prostitutes from the area of Pir Widhai, Rawalpindi, where more than 100 such brothels operate. Children as young as eight years are brought here from underdeveloped and rural areas of Kashmir, Gilgit, Skardu, Swat and Peshawar either through kidnapping or trapping the runaway children. Their captors offer them to clients staying at shabby hotels for a night. Arrested children told reporters that their main clients were drivers, conductors and passengers... Anyway, it can be said with authenticity that child exploitation in tourism is an uncommon phenomenon in Pakistan, unlike some of its neighbors like Sri Lanka...

Child Prostitution: The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children, Islamic Republic  of Pakistan: Out of the approximately 12,000-14,000 street children in Karachi, 50 percent fall victim to commercial sex exploitation, a majority of them being male children between 7-11 years of age (Reference Link). - Teenage prostitutes were victims of abuse: Ninety-five per cent of the teenage prostitutes in Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Lahore were sexually abused by their close relatives, friends and teachers before they adopted the profession of granting sexual favours for payment, a new study has found... The data show that all respondents had some level of education. The organisation has used a sample of 74 male prostitutes from the three cities while conducting the qualitative and quantitative survey.

Pakistan: Taking the Lid Off Child Prostitution (By Muddassir Rizvi, Sept. 22, 2000, InterPress Third World News Agency. Text also located on this web page "Human Trafficking"): Every evening after sunset, 17-year-old Gul waits for clients at the bustling Pir Wadhai bus station in Rawalpindi, the twin city of the Pakistani  capital Islamabad. There is hardly any day without a customer. His usual clients are travellers changing buses at Rawalpindi or policemen and bus drivers. He may even have three clients in one evening. ''I never approach anybody, they always come to me. Then we go to one of the many hotels around the bus station,'' he says... 'I don't want to sell my body, but have no choice,'' says Gul, who is the family's main bread-earner... Gul is one of the thousands of Pakistani children who have been driven into prostitution by poverty, say child rights groups... The first official admission of the existence of child prostitution in Pakistan, the NCCWD survey came up with shocking findings. Out of a sample of 233 children interviewed in the country's four provinces, 159 admitted being engaged in commercial sex. Of these, 98 were boys, who found business near hotels, estaurants, video shops, cinema halls and public parks."

Situational analysis report on prostitution of boys in Pakistan (Lahore & Peshawar) (PDF Download): "Forms of prostitution of boys: The prostitution of boys living on the streets of Pakistan’s major cities mostly takes place at bus terminals and in public parks... ‘Free floating’ Boys in Prostitution... Hijras also known as the third sex, hijras are biological males but are usually castrated. They consider themselves neither male or female, but commonly have feminine names, dress as women, wear jewellery and cosmetics, grow their hair long, and prefer to be referred to as ‘she’. Traditionally hey are dancers, but some are also involved in prostitution. Hijras usually live together in a single community and follow a specific code governing their relationships with each other and with their leader, or guru... The guru also teaches them how to dance, attract and give pleasure to exploiters. Zenanas: Also biological males, zenanas are not castrated but consider themselves women inside men’s bodies. Zenanas may or may not feminize their behaviour in public, but commonly wear make up, women’s clothes and take on the female role during sex as the penetrated partner. Chawas: Chawas are usually young men who look and behave like ordinary males, and who indulge in sex with other men. They will penetrate and be penetrated, orally and anally. There are about 2,500 Chawas in the cruising areas of Lahore. Malishias: are professional massage workers although some also sell sex to men..." - Marginalised male sex workers vulnerable to HIV/AIDS.

Hate Crimes: "I think we have to look at all the potential consequences to the coalition that the U.S. is trying to build, and the way it's building it," warns Surina Khan, executive director of the International Lesbian and Gay Human Rights Commission (ILGHRC). Born in Pakistan and raised in an Islamic family, Khan is more than familiar with the policies of some of the hard-line Islamic countries the U.S. has bolstered and whose abuses the U.S. has excused. While much of the Muslim world has condemned the terror attacks, views Islamic terrorists and regimes like the Taliban as having twisted the tenets of Islam, and may be more moderate toward women, on the issue of homosexuality Islam is fairly uniform across the board, as is much of Christianity. "Homophobia runs through mainstream, conservative, and fundamentalist elements of Islam," says Khan. "It's a common thread that runs through every Muslim nation."

Human Right struggle for LGs in A Religious Society (Muhammad Abdullah Mansoor, Alliance for Bright Citizens (NGO), Lahore, Pakistan) (Abstract, Must Scroll: PDF Download. Full text): "Our NGO is dedicated to lesbian, gay, bisexual those questioning their sexual orientation or gender Identity. Its goal is to provide a safe space and a forum for lgbt people to address issues of common Concern, share ideas & experiences. I let you know that we live in religious & and conservative society that is anti-gay. These activities are punishable according to law as well as according to moral values in our society. Our society does not tolerate us. Alliance for Bright Citizens aims to support LG in reconciling their sexual orientation or gender identity with our strict society. We promote education, human rights, social justice, peace and tolerance to bring closer to society that is free from prejudice & discrimination. I have been working since 1994 for human rights of gay youths & educating them to make awareness for discrimination free society. I educate gays to uplift their social & mental level to live in the society with honour. It is needed to make awareness for healthy thinking about gays. I consider the education is the best factor to produce change in all sphere of life from personal attitude to collective behaviour of society towards queer. In this conference I will visit the international personalities. I will collect & exchange our ideas & experiences from the delegates. I can collect their ideas, experiences and achievements in their societies. This information will be helpful for our organization to accelerate our activities."

Out of the Shadows: "Of the seven interviewed for this article, three are from Pakistan and four from India... All differ in their backgrounds, in their relations with their families and in their process of accepting their sexuality. Yet a sense of a common South Asian culture runs through their experiences, which, in some form, include encounters with homophobia from other South Asians. "In the milieu in which you grew up, (homosexuality) is not acceptable," said Mona. This lack of acceptance causes confusion and a sense of isolation for many South Asians. Gays who come out risk being ostracized by their family and community. Family expectations of marriage and children, reluctance to discuss sexuality, and the common view that homosexuality is a Western concept contribute to the intolerant attitude toward gays in South Asian countries. Lack of communication adds to intolerance of homosexuality. South Asians traditionally regard sexuality as a taboo subject of discussion... In addition to treating it as an aberration, many South Asians consider homosexuality a Western practice. Atif’s mother asked if he became gay because of Western influences, as did Nick’s parents, who also asked if he became gay because he was lonely in America. Stereotypes abound, such as beliefs that all gays are promiscuous or that all homosexuals are dying of AIDS. There is no word for homosexuality in Hindi or Urdu; to describe a homosexual person in either language, one uses slang. In Hindi, a gay man can be called a "hijra," which actually means eunuch or transvestite."

To be gay and Muslim: (Alternate Link) "For Salman Husainy, an autumn drive four years ago was the moment of truth. Sitting in the passenger seat of his sister Shaheen's car, he blurted out what he'd long known but kept hidden. "I'm gay," Husainy said. Shocked, Shaheen crashed into the car in front of her. The minor accident didn't cause any damage, and Shaheen parked the car on the side of the road so they could talk. "Are you sure? We don't have any gay people in our community," Shaheen said. Like most Muslims, Shaheen had never imagined that someone praying beside her at the mosque could be gay. Since Islam teaches that homosexuality is wrong, gay members often keep their sexual orientation in the closet... Salman Husainy no longer wants to be anonymous. He spent his early years in Pakistan, where his only introduction to gays was the hijras: hermaphrodites who dress in women's clothing and perform at weddings. Hijras are both ridiculed and feared in Pakistan. Laughing behind the performers' backs is okay, but beware of angering one of them -  the entertainers can give curses or blessings at birth ceremonies and weddings. Beyond the hijras, gay relationships are kept in the closet in Pakistan. Section 377 of the Pakistani penal code says that two men practicing intercourse can be stoned to death, but the rule is rarely implemented. More often, gays are ostracized from friends and family."

An Islamic Revolutionary (The Guardian, August 30, 2001): "Adnan Ali is a Muslim - and he’s gay. Although he is condemned for his sexuality, he continues to defy the fundamentalists by offering help to others like himself... "When I was growing up in Pakistan I thought I was the only one on earth. I feel very proud to be gay and Muslim, but it has taken me years. I thought at first I was Muslim so I could not be gay. Then I thought I was gay so I could not be a Muslim. "All my first affairs of course were with people who were gay and Muslim, but no one ever reconciled the two things. Interestingly, I met most of them at the mosques in Lahore. No, honestly — you would go just to cruise and meet people because they were such social places."

Hijra in Pakistan: Feminine Soul, Masculine Body (Alternate Link): "At first glance, Hijras are men in women's clothing. So, they must be transvestites, right? No. Most Western transvestites prefer women as sexual partners, are often married, and only dress in women's clothing now and then, often in secret. Hijras, on the other hand, function in society only as women, and their partners are men and other Hijras. So, what are the Hijras? Farrah, born Ahmed, around 35 years of age and a Hijra for the last 20 years, explains, "We are neither men nor women. We have men's bodies and women's souls." We are in a squalid neighborhood of Karachi, sitting in a tiny room that Farrah shares with Balli, also a Hijra. Like most Hijras, they entered the Hijra world in their youth, "We were born Hijras and felt by the age of 5 or 6 that we weren't boys," Farrah explains. They followed tradition by taking girl's names and choosing a guru or "mistress," and have ever since worn only women's clothing, long hair, and lots of makeup. For many years they have been living together in their guru's house with five other "daughters" in their extended Hijra family.

The Hijras of Pakistan: "On the bottom rungs of Pakistan's social ladder, the eunuch-transvestites or "Hijras" scrape out a hard existence. Cultural descendants of the court eunuchs of the Mughal Empire (1526-1858), the Hijras now earn their living as beggars, dancers and prostitutes. Though often reported on in India, the Hijras of Pakistan are relatively unknown outside of that country. Most Pakistani cities have sizable Hijra communities, divided into clan groups living mostly in slums and presided over by a leader or guru. Hijra means hermaphrodite in Urdu, but most Hijras are homosexual transvestites, some of whom have gone through a crude sex-change operation. The Hijras are both feared and pitied in Pakistan, feared for their supposed ability to place curses, pitied for being outcast children of Allah." - De Hijras in India en Pakistan.

Pakistan police caught in killer transvestite trap: "He told police he had been stranded when his bus broke down and had been attacked and robbed while walking home. They didn't believe him and after a 'thorough interrogation' the man revealed the truth: his assailants were  transvestite homosexual prostitutes - known as hijras - he had followed into a field for sex. Every town in Pakistan has its hijras. For centuries homosexuals, and transsexuals, have lived together communally and made a living from dancing at weddings, offering blessings or threatening curses, and prostitution. Traditionally, hijras have been thought lucky and valued socially. But recently they have been reduced to petty crime, drug abuse, steroids and botched surgical operations. And as more militant versions of Islam have grown in strength, so has intolerance."

America, My Love: Uncle Sam and a gay immigrant from the land of the Islamic bomb: ""Bugga" is the derisive term tribal Baluchi people use for gay men like myself who take the "passive" role. The word is actually synonymous with the English epithet, "faggot." In Baluchi culture, no male person is considered worse than a bugga. There's a saying that for a male it's all right to do anything other than to steal or take the "passive" role in sex with another man. Like neighboring Afghans and Iranians, Baluchi culture does not stigmatize the man playing the "active" role in gay sex. The cultural stigma of homosexuality is further compounded by Islam's threat of hell for gays, as almost all Baluchi are Muslims. As a child, I heard family gossip that my dad's eldest half brother was a cross-dressing gay in Burma. Mom never forgave my uncle for that. She cast him in the role of a villain, and used his example to brainwash me against gays. This played havoc with me when I began grappling with my own homosexuality, growing up in Pakistan as a middle-class teenager..."

Sex, Longing & Not Belonging: A Gay Muslim's Quest for Love & Meaning - 1997 - by Badruddin Khan (Amazon). "This is the first book of its kind, and well written too! The book describes in first person the authors experiences, growing up Muslim and gay in Pakistan....but beyond that, it also includes striking commentary on what it means to be "gay" in North America, from another point of view, and a very educated one at that." - Longing but not belonging: Gay Muslim author talks about a life of contradiction -- and coming to peace with himself (Interview).

Thesis on child abuse flusters PU teachers: "A thesis on child abuse and homosexuality was censored by Punjab University teachers because of its “taboo” contents.... Most victims of sexual assault are attacked in seminaries and jails, the thesis says. Several chapters of her dissertation, titled ‘Expressions of physical assault of adolescents during their childhood’, have been removed and only an “approved” version is now in the library, students told Daily Times. Ms Koser initially wished to call the dissertation ‘Unnatural offence: causes and consequences’, but her teachers thought this was too provocative a title... According to Ms Koser’s thesis, there was no single factor leading towards child abuse, but a lack of sex education was one of the main reasons. A lack of knowledge created curiosity, which led older children towards homosexuality and sadism... Ms Koser interviewed more than 100 children aged 10 and 18 and found that 35 percent of them had been sexually abused or indulged in homosexual activity with other children. She interviewed boys from the posh areas of the city, around Data Darbar, the Lahore Railway Station, the General Bus Stand and Camp Jail. According to her research, 54 percent of homosexual acts were consensual, while 30 percent said they were coerced and 16 percent said they were assaulted and raped by older boys. Several children in jail said they had been abused by jail officials... According to the thesis, homosexuality among boys and girls was on the rise because children considered it less likely they would be caught..."

NFI (NAZ Foundation International) Assessments / Reports: Lahore MSM (Men Who Have Sex With Men) Assessment - (Full: PDF Download) (Short: PDF Download) (Download Page). - HIV/AIDS in Pakistan: the battle begins.

NACP & UNAIDS (2006). Pakistan, Country Report. For The Risks and Responsibilities International Consultation on Male Sexual Health and HIVC in Asia and the Pacific. PDF Download. Content/Download Page: "MSM: 2-3 groups in Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore... Legally MSMs cannot form organization... Hijras networks exist all over Pakistan... Sub-national HIV prevalence among MSM : Karachi: 7% in 2004 and 5% in 2006 according to (HASP)... MSM: specific HIV programmes face problems with law enforcement... ‘MSM and HIV’ are part of the country’s scaling up towards universal access to prevention, treatment, care and support initiative : YES. If “YES” Describe: Mid Term review of the National Response is being under taken presently. This would be followed by revising the National Strategic Plan and Scaling up of services for the vulnerable group as envisaged in the country consultation on Scaling up to Universal Access."

First International Conference of Asian Queer Studies (2005): Papers available for download. - The 2005 Conference Abstracts: Many of these possible papers were either not presented or not made avaible as full text papers (PDF Download) (Alternate Link). - Titles for abstracts of these paper: related to Pakistan:  - Human Right struggle for LGs in A Religious Society (Muhammad Abdullah Mansoor, Alliance for Bright Citizens (NGO), Lahore, Pakistan).

Abstracts: - HIV / AIDS among men who have sex with men in Pakistan.

Google Directory. - Trikone Magazine: January 1998: Pakistan Special Issue.

Gay Pakistan (Global Gayz) - News/Reports 1998 to Present. - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden. - Sodomy Laws: Pakistan. - LGBT rights in Pakistan.

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

BHUTAN - Gay Bhutan (Global Gayz): "Introduction: A story about 'gay' Bhutan is not much of a tale. There is no gay presence, no venues, no organizations. What little can be reported is only discerned from few anecdotes reported by observers who have lived in this small mountain country--and who are hesitant to tell all they know. Included here are three commentary/interviews by three 'insiders' who offer small windows of knowledge about Bhutan's 'open secret' tradition of sacred and secular bi-sexuality..."

Dorji G (Programme Manager, HIV/AIDS, Ministry of Health, 2006). Bhutan: Country Report. For The Risks and Responsibilities International Consultation on Male Sexual Health and HIVC in Asia and the Pacific. PDF Download. Content/Download Page: "Does the country have a National Strategic Plan on HIV? Yes. - Is there a surveillance system in the country to monitor and report male-to-male sexual transmission of HIV? No. - There are no MSM-specific programmes and interventions in the National HIV Plan. - Are there MSM social structures (e.g. Networks, social groups, organisations) in the country? No. Is there ‘MSM-HIV’ related leadership in the country? (spokespersons, politicians,MSM representatives on official platforms, committees) No...."

Mailing list for Gay &; Lesbian people from Bhutan. - ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden.

MALDIVES - Crime and Politics in the Maldives: "The Maldivian society considers certain crimes more shameful than others. Among these are homosexuality, fraud and petty theft. If a man were arrested for homosexuality, he would tell his friends he was found with a girl." - The Horrors of Maafushi prison in Maldives: "When prisoners practise homosexuality in the block, it is largely ignored, but those who don't perform prayers in the congregation are hunted and punished..."

A Gay Choice?: On a short walk home with a friend of mine, I asked, jokingly, if he would still consider me his friend if I were to confess my latent homosexuality to him. After a short pause to contemplate what I had just asked him, he sternly replied that he would not. Upon my insistence he could not justify why he would abandon our friendship, and only gave me lame reasons such as “you might start hitting off on me”. I sardonically challenged him by asking him to explain how he had female friends with such a dimwitted rationale. I asked another friend what he would do if he woke up one fine morning to find himself attracted to members of the same sex. His quick reply was to commit suicide... [Note: A range of opinions from Maldavians are present.]

15 Minutes with Sappe': Minivan News spends Fifteen Minutes with Ahmed Moosa (Sappe'), editor-in-chief of the Dhivehi Observer newspaper and one of 15 people elected to the Council of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)...Homosexuality, paedophilia and rape are crimes in Maldives and we must expose those who commit these crimes. These people are evil and we do not have to respect them. I certainly don't. They should be behind bars...

Life in A Gay Perspective: - The weekend...It's a Thursday evening, the streets of Malé are crawling with people, like insects. I'm sitting here inside, still in my PJs, with my brand new squeaky clean blog and not knowing what to type in it... So here I am. Plain old me. And yes, very, very Gay as opposed to the all-Maldivian, "hey, I'm not gay, I'm bi." Personally, I feel that being Bi is worse... it means you're willing to have sex with anything that walks on two legs. Which doesn't look good on your resumé... your romantic resumé. You finally find the guy of your dreams and you go and blurt out, "Hey, I'm bi." Oops. - Some questions for thought: Why is it that a majority of the men in Maldives who think they are gay, are actually male to female transexuals in denial? Is it a norm that you just have to be feminine and make feminine jokes if you're gay? But more importantly... Why do we classify ourselves as Gay, Lesbian, Bi or Transexual? Why do we tie ourselves down to labels?... - The Maldives, Gay Men and Love: The rampant sexual behavior exhibited by the so called, “I don’t want to love, I am only one-touch-good-bye” gay Maldivians give the normal gay men a real headache... The Maldivian gay guys are worse than gossipy old women.... - Marriage of Convenience.

Reviewing Life from Maldives: - Hetero, gay or bi – does it matter?: ...from my own experiences, in Maldives, where “holhuashi” culture has been the norm for centuries, we are quite tolerant of things like people’s alternate sexualities but will like to joke about it because there isn’t much else to do... So coming back to the question whether I am gay or bi or hetero or lesbian ... I believe that people’s sexualities are quite flexible, and under the “right” circumstances, will engage in any kind of sexual activity... t the onset of our friendship, I told Zon that “he was the nicest person who must have come into existence in the 16 billion year history of the universe.” The way that he smiled that day, I am sure he was the happiest person at that time. And I am calling religion a virus because I saw what it did to him. I saw what it did to my relationship. I saw how religion can turn such a nice person into a monster whose face and character I was to never understand again... To elaborate on the question of what percent of people in the world are hetero, bi or gay, let me say that according to statistics and studies conducted, a larger proportion, about 80 percent of people are “practicing” heteros. This is understandable because bisexuality and homosexuality are still taboo subjects and frowned upon by most societies, and since biology works to fulfill our evolutionary function of reproduction by having sex with the opposite sex. According to studies, practicing bisexuals may be 20 or so percent. And strictly practicing gay and lesbian people make up a mere 3 or less percent. But this does not refute my earlier argument. This is “practicing” percentage. As I said before, I believe that every body is a latent bisexual who have the potential to engage in any kind of sex, given the “right” circumstances. As to the ultimate question, am I gay, here is the answer: I once went to visit a British psychologist to have a chat, and from what she told me this is what I understand about myself: I am bisexual, naturally, but in her words, “have a stronger passion towards men.”

Disobedient editor: But Aminath Najeeb, a highly respected Maldivian journalist and editor of the daily newspaper, Minivan (freedom), points out that it is important for “the international community not to look at the Maldives simply as a haven for tourists, a country of atolls, the blue ocean, silver sands and coconut palms swaying in the tropical breeze.” Instead, she says, more attention should be paid to “the brutal way in which the country’s citizens are being denied their fundamental rights and the way the local media is gagged.” Najeeb, one of the country’s only women editors and a prominent female journalist, has first hand experience of the latter. In fact, on Monday (30 April) she is due to appear in court to face charges of “disobedience to order,” a provision of the Maldives Penal Code that facilitates the violation of the right to freedom of expression and assembly, according to Amnesty International... Dear Ammaa, she’s not only the editor of Minvan “fatha fohli” she’s also the prominent leader of Lesbian groups in Maldives, also the one who encourages Christianity in Muslim Maldives…. So Ammu ji… thats right she needs your help….good work!!!!

A Situation Assessment of HIV/AIDS in the Maldives for the Year 2000 (PDF Download) (Alternate Link): "“Dhivehi society combines a rigid legalistic and prudish attitude toward sex at the ideal level, with a remarkably open attitude at the behavioural level” (8:367). The same observation was recorded in the year 1611 (16) and appears as true today as it was then. All sexual behaviours that spread HIV are found in the Maldives, but the frequencies and numbers of persons involved are yet unknown. Foreign and Maldivian sex workers can be found in Male’, as can standard S. Asian patterns of homosexuality... Also of importance is the fact that the majority of MSM are likely to be married, in keeping with the S. Asian pattern."

de Lind van Wijngaarden JV (2006). The HIV/AIDS situation  in the Republic of the Maldives in 2006. National HIV/AIDS Council (NAC),
Ministry of Health of the Maldives and the UN Theme Group on HIV/AIDS (PDF Download): "Male sex work seems rare. However, one 13-year old and one 14-year old boy were found who reportedly have sex with men in exchange for money, for as little as 30 Rf. The boys estimated there are about 10 more boys in a similar position in their quarter. Sex takes place in cheap guesthouses around the cities, and customers are mainly port laborers... Male to male sex between teenagers: as part of growing up, boys may explore their emerging sexuality by playing ‘games’ with each other, for example while having a shower (see case study below). These games usually involve mutual masturbation, but sometimes also oral and anal sex. Key informants estimate at a large proportion of Maldivian men experience this form of same-sex behavior when they are young. Similar to the above, male to male sex between men in all-male environments can occur for similar reasons: when men are away from their wife for a long time, some turn to each other for ‘sexual relief’... According to key informants, in the Maldives 90-95% of men with homosexual orientation do get married. Being married does not prevent them from continuing their sexual activity with men. Many of these men find partners through social networks, and increasingly by using the internet...

Maldives Country Profile: Chapter 8 (PDF Download): STI/HIV/AIDS: "Key informants indicated that sexual networks among men who have sex with men (MSM) may be far larger than between men and women practicing casual sex. Fear of discovery and legal prosecution limit these practices; though do not diminish them entirely..."

Holiday at the Maldives: "Homosexuality is also illegal, so you can't be too open about it. At the resorts you usually meet only other European tourists, and they don't express problems with a gay lifestyle. This means, however, that the Maldives are certainly not a destination for people looking for a sex holiday... See commentaries. "

Maldives; the first Islamic country to legalise homosexuality and gay marriages?: Speculation is mounting that Gayyoom's brother Abdulla Hameed, Maldives' most notorious bi-sexual, is going to propose a change of law in the upcoming constitutional reform agenda which is now underway. Homosexuality has been a trend of the ruling elite in the Maldives and this is one of the best known public secrets in the Maldives. In addition to homosexuality, paedophilia is common among this princely, powerful and proud 'elite', who have a deep conviction that the wealth of the country belongs to them and that the people of Maldives are their slaves...  Hameed is such a powerful man that he will do whatever he can to get his way. This leads us to believe that when the new constitution is amended and adopted, homosexuality and gay marriages will be legalised in the Maldives making it the first ever Islamic country to do so... - Rangali Island forum: Are gay couples accepted in the Maldives? - Interview with a foreign gay person in Maldives.

Short Story: "The Only Living Boy in Male": Ali also had a strong belief that it was God's mercy to him to date that he had never actually indulged in gay sex. Although he certainly hated his autistic character, Ali believed that it was this autistic character itself that kept people from him at a distance and therefore never led to an opportunity where it could lead to sex, gay or straight. And concerning the case with Nihad, Ali inwardly felt that it was divine intervention somehow that day that prevented him and Nihad from actually indulging in gay sex, other than harmlessly touching each other's manhood. Now in his early 30s, and very much confused, not a day passes without Ali contemplating suicide. Sometimes he spends hours lying on his bed, mentally tired, and seriously in thought, and there comes certain points where his mind stops thinking, and he actually touches the veins on his wrist...

Youth Voices: Facts, Opinions and Solutions (2005, PDF Download). From a religious point of view the youth rank in the following order the issues to avoid: a. Homosexuality. b. Sex Outside Marriage. c. Taking Drugs. d. Drinking Alcohol. e. Sexual Violence. f. Stealing. g. Lying/Cheating... About 78% of the youth reported that they are not at ‘risk’ for ‘the major social issues facing youth today’ that they had listed, such as drugs, alcohol, unemployment and illegal sexual activities. However, 19% consider themselves at risk.

ILGA Report. - The Eastgarden.

Search GLBTQ: The Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer Culture. - Search BGLAD. - Search the QRD. - Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - Search - Search Google Scholar. - Search Google's G:LBT Directory. - MSN Search. - Search many full text articles and papers.

Academic Searches: Search IngentaConnect: The most comprehensive collection of academic and professional publications. - Search Project Muse: Scholarly Journals Online. - Search JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive. - Search The National Library of Medicine.

ASIAN RESOURCES  - Moved to A New Page



See special "South Asia" information web pages for links to full text articles and papers available online:

Male 'Homosexualities' In India / South Asia

Search all GLBT Resource Directories. - The "Proteus" Super-Search System is recommended (See also Proteus Original). - Best Search Engine on Proteus is: Google!  If you are searching for a string of word together, such as a title, forget not to place what is sought in quotation marks. Example: "Death by Denial". - Bing Search by MSN is also a good search engine. For all types of search engines, see Wikipedia listing. - Search the QRD.

  The development of these GLBT information web pages were made possible through the collaboration of Richard Ramsay (Professor, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary) and Pierre Tremblay (independent researcher, writer, and GLBT children and youth advocate) who both recognize that often needed social changes occur as the result of knowledge availability and dissemination. Additional Information at: Warning, Acknowledgments, Authors.

These GLBTQ Info-Pages were located at the University of Southampton from 2000 to 2003, this being the result of a collaboration with Dr. Chris Bagley, Department of Social Work Studies, University of Southampton.

Graphics are compliments of Websight West. The Synergy Centre donated computer/Internet time to facilitate the construction of this GLBT information site. Both are owned by a Chris Hooymans, a friend, and former publisher of a gay & lesbian magazine in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Chris continues to offer his expertise whenever needed and he has supplied, free of charge, the hosting of the site - Youth Suicide Problems: A Gay / Bisexual Male Focus - where a smaller - GLBTQ Education Section - and the Internet Resource Page for this subject ( is located.

Computer time was also supplied by Rick Reist & Glenn Lynas, and Glenn also supplied other forms of assistance.

Many thanks to Wendy Stephens from The Department of Communications Media, University of Calgary.  She communicated with publishers of many academic journals (an ongoing time-consuming process) for permission to reproduce abstracts from papers and studies on these GLBT information web pages.


The information made available on this web page does not represent all the relevant information available on the Internet, nor in professional journals and in other publications.

This web page was constructed to supply a spectrum of information for individuals seeking to understand one or more of the many gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer and transgender issues.

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