Hyderabad: Seeking to redefine love for Hyderabadis, the LGBT group ‘Queer Campus’ on Sunday held a ‘Hug Me’ campaign at the symbolic ‘Love Hyderabad’ art sculpture near People’s Plaza.
Close to 50 members of the community gathered at the busy recreation spot, holding placards that gave out a message of equality, such as ‘Love has no gender’ and ‘Hug me, I’m gay’.
The event was organised as part of a curtain-raiser series for the upcoming pride walk to be held in February 2018. While pride parades have been gaining ground around the world, the first one in Hyderabad was held as late as 2013.
At Necklace Road, ‘Queer Campus’ volunteers spoke to the public about loopholes in current law that could be exploited for discrimination against the community.
While many chose to just click pictures of the campaigners or even ignore them, a good number of people did offer hugs, and some even joined the team, holding placards and helping as volunteers.
“The response was amazing, we were hugged by many strangers. Some of them enquired about our campaign while a few even joined us in spreading awareness. It makes us feel at home when strangers show such selfless support,” said Sandi, co-organiser of the event.
There were also people who gave hugs to the volunteers even though they were not fully supportive of the cause.
“I think gay marriage has a positive side and a negative one too. I cannot say that I stand for the cause, but I would not refuse anybody a hug, no matter what their sexual orientation is,” said Laxman, a chauffeur by profession, who hugged three of the volunteers.