Just when you think you have heard and seen it all , something comes along to suprise you in the best ways possible . Meet Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil is an openly gay Indian prince who is the son and probable heir of the Maharaja of Rajpipla in Gujarat .
Gohil , who is proudly and openly gay , uses his position to fight for LGBT rights and spread AIDS awareness. His charity, Lakshya Foundation, works with homosexual men and the transgender community to promote safer sexual practices. Hanging condoms on trees and in loos , Gohil uses his fame to educate people and make them aware of safe sex practices.
This dapper ,well dressed man had gained international fame for his brave and gutsy work . appearing on Oprah dressed to the nines , he raises his voices against misconceptions that cloud the LGBT community in India.
"People say homosexuality is a part of western culture. It is absolutely wrong," says Gohil in an interview.
"It is the hypocrisy in our society which is refusing to accept this truth. And this motivated me to come out openly and tell the world 'I am gay, so what? And I am proud of it'."
He also adds that he is not the first gay man in Indian royalty , and knows many relatives and other members of royal families to be secretly gay. He discovered he was gay when he was 12 or 13 , finding himself attracted to members of the same sex without knowing what that meant.
We for one , applaud Gohil for having the courage to speak out on a taboo topic and try and make a difference His beautiful message to the world ?
" I Seek love , not privilege"
Watch his interview with Oprah in the video below.
This is a country where gay sex is still criminalised, the pressure to marry and have children in order to continue the family line is massive and there's a huge stigma attached to homosexuality. However, there was no pressure on the Prince to marry at first. In the video, he says he did it 'voluntarily' because he thought that will make him 'normal.'
Manavendra says that he is not the only homosexual man in the Indian royalty. In the video he claims that he knew several relatives and friends from royal families who were gay, but could never 'come out'.
When he came out to his parents, they refused to accept it. So, they took him to several doctors to 'make him straight'. They offered to pay money for any form of surgery. They also took him to religious leaders.
After they failed to 'convert him back to normal', the Queen, took out an ad in the newspaper to publicly disown her only son. In his home state, effigies of the prince were burned and demands were made that he be stripped of his title for bringing shame to his family line.
"I'm not attached to my biological family and that is something that happens in most royal families. Because you're not brought up by them – they're there to give birth to you and then you're in the care of servants... I have never experienced love and affection from my own biological mother so when my parents disapproved or disowned me, it didn't hurt me at all," he once told Guardian in an interview.
In 2000, a sense of injustice compelled Prince Manvendra to start The Lakshya Trust, a community-based organisation dedicated to supporting gay men and to education about and prevention of HIV/Aids. "It's doing well, a lot more people are educated now," he says in the video.
When Oprah Winfrey called the Prince to her show, he had said, "When I say that the homosexuals are not free in India, we don't have the freedom to love. All of us are scared. Imagine those who have fallen in love, they've had partners in their lives, they've had boyfriends, they want to go for long-term relationships -- are now all scared. That's where we are losing our freedom."
At the end of the video, the Prince signs off with a lovely message: "We are all human beings. We are all equal... All we want is love. Gay rights cannot just be won in the courtroom but in the hearts and the minds of the people we live with."
We hope the world listens to this one.
Also See On HuffPost:
India's LGBT Movement: A Timeline
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Laws remain as cheapest as possible for women as well as animals where one gets bail by paying a fine of just 50rs and such people are again released in the same society to again do same crimes. One should have never thought if shot at first instance.
Feeling very angry and sad about incident. But as a True Catholic I would say, Priest are not God, he's Human except took a vow for PriestHood. Not anyone is perfect in this world, evryone makes mistakes. Let him that be removed from all Church activities. I am wondering why Catholics are persecuted more in news ,when rest religions also had similar situations. Please note the point, it's not an act of rape, but happened of Mutual Consent. Please not persecute me, am not supporting the incident. but expressed ma concerns.
India still needs a lot of work done by US. Modi & Trump are partnering closely for some bilateral ties in all the sectors, more predominantly in the defence where our nation is expected to get the military equipments supplied by US. Our dependence on them need not be a case for being ignorant towards the hate crimes. Racism against Indian in US is something which has not been questioned seriously at all.
The govt of India should take serious notice of this offence and issue a strong worded statement to SL such that this activity of terrorizing,killing and looting Indian fishermen will happen again. This cannot be allowed to go on forever and ever.
Mera discomfort, tumhare discomfort se definitely kala hai. I completely agree, and its great that you are finally acting-up in the later years of your life. Throughout the History, be it slavery or apartheid, the suppressed always have had to fight it out themselves. But a Lincoln or a Gandhi can also exist. Do they need to emerge automatically?
Offer him another contract for another Trump Tower, hypnotise him into believing that he must submit to a polygraph test or the Russians won't play ball, dress up as Russian investigators - Tom Hanks would be one good choice - and have him "testify" to the fact that he hobnobbed with the Russians. Let's not for the mo, go into the etymology of "testify".
karan always wonders why people take up comments made on his show and make such a fuss out of them later on. this time he has fallen victim to his own little mind-game. the woman spoke her mind and kudos to her!
More than 20 Muslim majority nations, including Pakistan and Bangladesh have outlawed triple talaq - this reality is never mentioned by rabid mullahs and the males who adorn the All India Muslim Personal Law Board. The AIMPLB has no Muslim women in their Board nor does it bother to formally seek and record their views on triple talaq and polygamy. It has no interest supporting female and child victims of these pernicious evils that ruin the lives of these unfortunate people and condemn them to a life of abject penury. The writer has not bothered to reiterate these facts while constantly berating the BJP as being merely opportunistic for espousing the cause of Muslim women victimized by these evils.
How easy for you to turn it into an argument on misogyny. When people were questioning kannhaiya Kumar and who was brainwashing him you made him an obc since misogyny wouldn't have worked there. Rohit vemula was a dalit. Please don't find excuses to turn every debate into a social issue. If people opposed her they did it because of their FOE. Obviously rape threats cannot be tolerated but sehwag or hooda didn't mean to be misogynistic or patronizing. Please introspect I beg of you before you publish articles. She's a martyr's daughter and no one could probably understand personal loss more than her but please don't make our country look so bereft of compassion every time there's an issue. I know there are problems but let's try and take a common ground.
Or probably it is time to bring all of your know how back home to your mother land and bring it back to its glory days, since you are unwanted in others stolen lands. No money is worth the risk of loved ones . Your mother land needs you and in 20 yrs or so India wil be the top nation in the world but not without your help.
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