Main | Friday, August 13, 2010

Gays Banned From NYC India Day Parade

UPDATE: The ban on SALGA has been lifted.
SALGA, a non-profit organization dedicated to serving New York's queer desi (South Asian) community, today announces that the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) has granted SALGA permission to march in New York City's annual India Day Parade (August 15). Just over two hours after announcing that SALGA would protest FIA's non-response and presumed denial of SALGA's application to march in the India Day Parade, FIA President Nirav Mehta confirmed in writing that SALGA's application has been approved and that SALGA will be allowed to march in the parade from now on.
While the LGBT community in India is making historic advances of late, NYC's gay Indian-American association has apparently been banned from marching in this Sunday's India Day Parade. Again. Via press release from NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn:
The South Asian Lesbian and Gay Association (SALGA) has once again been excluded from marching in the annual Indian Day Parade. This week my office was contacted by SALGA, which submitted its application on July 29th to the parade organizers, the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA). Despite submitting its application in advance of the deadline, SALGA has received no response from FIA. We reached out to the parade organizers several times to discuss this matter. When an acceptable solution was not reached, Council Members Danny Dromm, Jimmy Van Bramer and I sent them the attached letter. As we said in our letter, it's absolutely unacceptable if SALGA is being excluded from the India Day Parade because it represents community members who are LGBT. The FIA has a history of barring SALGA from its parade, and this unfair exclusion must stop this year. It's my firm belief that any event that celebrates the rich ethnic history of our city should embrace and honor the fact that we are all, each and every one of us, a part of that history.
Several hundred thousand spectators are expected to attend Sunday's parade.

RELATED: Gays also continue to be banned from NYC's St. Patrick's Day Parade, which is the world's largest such celebration.

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