What’s life like for LGBTQ people in Nepal?

Gareth Johnson/ Pahichan – I caught up with social worker and activist Aanik Rana to talk about life in Nepal.

What makes Nepal a great place to live?

Smiles, mountains, diversity of cultures and ethnicity, spirituality, and acceptance of LGBTQ people.

What are some of the down-sides of living in Nepal?

For people who are coming from the developed world, the lack of infrastructure, poor roads, and inadequate water supply can be

Is Nepal a good place for LGBTQ people to visit?

Yes and no. Yes because LGBTQ people are largely accepted, and the new
constitution guarantees equal rights and protection — we can be open,
vocal and organised. No, because constitutional rights are not yet
translated into the laws — LGBTQ people can face soft discrimination. In Nepal, LGBTQ people are accepted, but may not always get the respect and rights that a human being deserves.

If someone was visiting Nepal, what hints or tips would you give

There are a lot of Tantric temples and festivals that celebrates gender and
sexuality diversities.

Go trekking, spend time with the villagers, help those communities who are still suffering from the devastating earthquake of 2015.

What are some of the things that you’re currently getting excited about?

I want to be an established role model and politician for the third-gender
communities in Nepal, and change all the discriminatory laws against
LGBTQ people. I’m excited to prepare myself for the next big election in a few
years time.

What are some of the things that are currently making you angry?

The government has been failing to change the discriminatory laws
against LGBTQ people, despite the Supreme Court’s directive order in
2007, and the 2015 constitution guaranteeing equality and protection.

What are some of your priorities for the remainder of 2018?

Continue lobbying policy makers to change and make better laws for
LGBTQ people, and strengthen my political base for the upcoming big

Follow Aanik Rana on Twitter

Aanik Rana (image supplied)
Aanik Rana (image supplied)

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