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Delhi: LGBT rights activist, transgender friends save Kashmir youngsters from mob


New Delhi, March 4: Lives of ordinary Kashmiris had turned hell overnight following the dastardly attack on a CRPF convoy in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama that killed over 40 personnel on February 14. Students, traders and other people from Kashmir were being targeted across the country.

Mannu BJ; Image credit: Mannu BJs Facebook account

People from the state were mobbed and asked to shut their businesses in other parts of the country and leave. In the dark times, a group of LGBT+ community came forward and protected some Kashmiri boys and girls from threats and attacks.

Mannu BJ, a cisgender gay man, was walking with his transgender friends when they saw a group of people from Kashmir were being shouted at. Mannu, who is associated with an NGO named Humsafar Trust that works for LGTB rights, said that they tried to make a few people from Haryana, who were shouting at the young Kashmiris blaming them for the Pulwama attack, understand that it was a right thing to do.

However, the people remained aggressive and even tried to manhandle Mannu when his transgender friends intervened and clapped loudly, shooing the attackers away.

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"I tried to explain: 'The one who did that (Pulwama attack) is also an Indian citizen, just as you are. And if someone at a place did something like that, you can't accuse everybody of that person's actions. But if you're going to attack them in such a way, what message are you trying to give?'" Mannu was quoted as saying by inuth.com.

The activist even tried to make the mob understand by giving the example of Jat reservation that happened a few years ago, resulting in large-scale vandalism in many areas of North India.

"'Even in the Jat movement (for reservation), people caused such damage to property. That doesn't mean we asked the Jats and Gujjars to go and leave the country? Everybody has rights just as you have rights.'"

The Kashmiri youngsters were then assured and brought to a Metro station. They were also advised to lodge a police complaint if they faced such an experience again.

No complaint was lodged with the police in this particular case though, inuth reported.

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