Pahichan Radio program completes its second phase

Kathmandu (Pahichan) August 2 – Pahichan Radio Program which is highlighting the voices of sexual and gender minority (homosexual, lesbian, transgender, bisexual and inter-sex) has completed its second phase.

The program was produced by Blue Diamond Society and funded by Norwegian Embassy. Altogether 1095 episodes were produced in the second phase.

Twelve years after the establishment of Blue Diamond Society, the first phase of program began from 2012(2069 Sharawan) which lasted for three phase. And, second phase began after the first phase was over.

Pahichan Radio program was the brain child of Founder of Blue Diamond Society and lawmaker of first Constituent Assembly Sunil Babu Pant.

He took initiation to prepare and air Pahichan radio program. The Radio program tried to present the problems of this community in their original voice, along with sensitizing concerned stakeholders to resolve the problems of this community.

Pahichan Radio program encouraged the members of this community to disclose their identity who were living in far-flung areas. People from various walks of lives received information about this community from Pahichan Radio program.

Due to the contribution made by Pant, the issue of this community entered in first Constituent Assembly (CA), the constitution adopted in 2015 has cemented the rights of this community. If Pant had not played the role in first CA, it was not possible to mention in the constitution drafting process.

The article 12, 18 and 42 of the constitution has addressed this community. Though the constitution has ensured the rights, laws have not been promulgated it. So, there is a need of excreting pressure on concerned agencies to ensure the rights making LGBTI friendly laws.

After securing the rights on citizenship and passport, this community is asking to formulate laws in order to pave way for same-sex marriage.

A government committee formed for the same purpose has already submitted its report and it is already pending in Ministry.  Though the report itself is positive, government, however, is not positive on same-sex marriage.

Media Coordinator of Pahichan, Madhav Dulal said program has played an important role in the campaign of sexual and gender minority.

“The review of second phase program which lasted for three years is underway. I am hopeful that media will continue to play positive role in the campaign of this community,” he said, adding that media will continue to provide space to this community. He said LGBTI played an important role to establish the agenda of this community in the society and constitution drafting process.

“The first three years were focused on informing family, society and country about the issues of this community and latest three years were instrumental to ensure the rights of this community in the new constitution,” he said.  He said it also helped to formulate laws and allocated budget from center to local level.

“The human rights violation of this community became the contents of programs. Still, discrimination against this community has not stopped. We are yet to formulate laws. So, there is a need of support from media to this community,” he said.

LGBTI community is of the view that the role of media is vital in ensuring the rights of this community. Speaking at a program few days back, Executive Director of Blue Diamond Society Manisha Dhakal said there is a huge support from media since the establishment of BDS. According to her, media is playing vital role to make an environment for this community to disclose their identity.

BDS Chair Pinky Gurung remembers the television program Sangharsa from which she disclosed her identity. Pinky is of the view that without support from media and political parties, no campaign could yield positive result.

In the first phase, program was broadcasted from 13 radio stations and six FM Radios were selected for the second phase of program.

FM radios program eastern Mechi to far-western Mahakali broadcasted Pahichan program. In this period, about two thousand guests participated.

In the last three years, Madhav Dulal, Naresh Phuyal, Ramesh Wagle, Ruksana Kapali, Ambika Dahal, Indira Neupane, Bipana Paneru, Raj Chaudhary and Binod BC were engaged in the production of Radio program.