When will the same-sex marriage law be formulated?

Jhapa (Pahichan) July 9 – Rupak Giri who hails from Arjundhara, Jhapa and Anubhav Darji who lives in Kathmandu transformed their two-year long love relationship into marriage recently. In the initial phase, family was reluctant to accept but they convinced their family. Now, they are living with their family. The family, however, is yet to accept their marriage.

Few days back, they went to meet Anubhav’s family but family did not accept them. Lead Nepal which is working for the rights of sexual and gender minority provided an opportunity to them to share their feelings and thoughts. Kabir Rahaman of Chandragadi of Jhapa is in same-sex relation since one year.

They want to live life together and they often talk about marriage but they are still to gather courage to marry. In the office of Lead Nepal, they said, “We are trying to convince to our family and marry within next six months.” They are of the view that they are facing difficulties to live due to the lack of laws.

Many members of this community feel that society is not liberal when it comes to addressing their concerns. A 19 year old boy wants to make their relation public but he does not have the courage.  Though family has accepted their relationship, social attitude to them remains unchanged.

Numa Limbu, Program Coordinator of Lead Nepal said members of this community are forced to live concealing their gender identity. “All the creations of earth have significance but we are treated that we came from separate planate. We want to live with dignity but society is yet to accept our existence,” Limbu said.

Chair of Lead Nepal Sushila Sharma said no one becomes transgender as per the wishes. They come to know about their gender identity during the course of upbringing.  As family members do not feel comfortable, they are forced to conceal their identity.

In Jhapa district along, there are around five thousand members of this community. Out of five thousand, 3500 are in contact of organizations.  There are more than one hundred couple who are living in same-sex relation.

Natasa Chakrabarti of Jhapa Gauradaha has the identity of boy till he became six years old. Natasa however, did not accept the identity of boy.  When she became six years old, she made public herself as a girl. With new identity, relationship with family was broken because family could not accept their new identity. Now, she is 28 years old and she has not yet taken the citizenship.

When my father is alive, I did not want to take citizenship. My father passed away few months ago. I was unable to meet my father in the last moments and I was not allowed to perform last rites,” she said.  Due to the identity issue, she has not been able to get citizenship as per gender identity.

Numa Limbu said that government is yet to implement the report on same-sex marriage. There are also other issues related to citizenship.