An ordinary Saturday night out for a young couple in love turned into a full-blown LGBT issue as Rasika and Shivangi, a lesbian couple were “chucked out” of a club for being who they are, say the couple who have been getting a lot of sympathy on social media.
Narrating their side of the story, Shivangi says, “They chucked us out because according to them, we were being indecent. And by that, they mean we were hugging and holding hands and (allegedly) making out. We were not doing anything of that sort, even though other straight couples were. They were not chucked out, and their behaviour is accepted as normal where ours isn't. Aren't these double standards?” asks Shivangi.
Club management denies claims
The club management, when contacted however denies any such incident, and says, “We are an inclusive space and have been operating in Chennai for over 2.5 years. Our aim is to promote inclusivity. We truly respect the hard-fought struggles of the LGBT community. We will be doing a great injustice to the movement itself to pin this incident to it. As management we weren't on site and most definitely after thorough examination of the footage we found there was no fracas or unpleasantness. Our internal enquiry is on and our aim right from the beginning was to be a safe space for diverse people. We are in the business of hospitality and we have had many LGBT members as patrons, surely this has been an issue that has been given a different colour unduly,” says Varun, who is one of the three members who are part of the management board.
Making her point yet again, Shivangi, says, “Homophobia doesn't have to be very loud, it can be very subtle. Like for instance here, they treated us differently from literally every couple who was present there.”
Getting rather emotional about the incident, Varun, Deepraj and Jai who are the three men running the hotel, say, “It's rather sad and petty to push us to a corner and blame us based on one version of the incident. We have the constant support of our patrons, who come from all walks of life, including all kinds of sexual preferences. This city has made three young people live their entrepreneurial dream and given us an identity. We all know how hard it is to be judged and denied opportunity. We would never allow for someone to be mistreated because of their gender or sexuality. But as a management we do prevent people locking themselves up in cubicles or misbehaving in a manner that causes discomfort to people. We cannot condone overt sexual behaviour, be it heterosexuals or homosexuals. Humanity is greater than sexuality, and so is human decency.”