[Editor’s note : Below is AAP’s reply to Kanishka Chaudhry regarding non-inclusion of LGBTQ concerns in Aam Admi Party’s Manifesto for Lok Sabha 2014 elections.]
Your ticket #636160 created on 04/04/2014 6:59 am is in National Feedback department.
As per the earlier conversation with you i acknowledge the fact that Arvind Kejriwal ji openly declared that we will support Relegalization of homosexuality . We truely belive that it is the fundamental right to choose and live with the person of choice , we also acknowledge that justice has been miscarriaged by our system and we definetely will, work for the amendement in system.
After Discussion with the Team which Drafed the Central Manifesto of the party , we found out that as it is a PENAL CODE , thereby it cannot be put in a manifesto because that would be a direct declaration against the IPC which is again a criminal offense . As we are challenging the IPC in documented manner , and using it to sway the feelings and turn it into votes , it will categorize against the CODE OF CONDUCT OF ELECTIONS too .
However as a Party which laid down its foundation on the principles of equality , decentralization and direct democracy we do assure that we have taken the matter forefront and will always support the legalization of the rights supporting the LGBT community. This has both been promised and noted to every party representative, and we feel compelled to do the right.
together we can and together we will.
Feel free to further write and share with us your valuable opinions.
Capt. Nitish Kumar Raghuvanshi
Dear fellow members,
I do not know who advised on the legality of this matter to the Team drafting the Central Manifesto.
If the reason of not putting it in is because the Party has been advised that it will be against the “CODE OF CONDUCT OF ELECTIONS” and “PENAL CODE”, I would say that the advise provided to the party is wrong. If the party requires, the LGBTIQ community will assist with proper legal counsel to challenge this advise and also help you frame the wordings in the manifesto accordingly. It is more a matter of the willingness to take it forward than anything else. We find that willingness missing in AAP. When the BJP can put in something as sinister as its Ram Mandir agenda on its Manifesto, saying it will explore all possibilities withing the framework of the constitution to construct it, I see no reason why AAP cannot do the same for a very legitimate issue of LGBTIQ rights. Let me remind you, our demand for our rights is very much within the framework of our constitution.
The above mentioned reason given by the Party does also clarify one main thing for the LGBTIQ community. It means that in the need of the hour to change section 377 in the IPC by an act of Parliament, the Party will not support it as it will be a documented involvement of the party in a matter which is against the “IPC”, which you have been advised is a criminal offense.
Declaring verbose support is akin to lip service that the community has seen in the past. It has never translated in anything positive for the community so far. Hence we are determined to sift through the politicians from the “AAM AADMIs” even if they do not belong to AAP and vote for them. If the party believes in the LGBTIQ cause, it should put it up on the manifesto else like the other parties, else it will be considered biased to the cause.
We would like to organize a meeting cum debate between the AAP team who drafted the Central Manifesto, the media, legal experts and members from the public including LGBTIQ community at the earliest. Do let us know the Party’s willingness to participate in the discussion and make its commitment to put our cause on the manifesto clear.