In a welcome move, the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) on Monday, October 5, formed a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) cell that will work specifically for the community.
With this move, NCP claimed to be the first political party across the country to have set up a dedicated cell for the LGBT community.
Party state president Jayant Patil and MP Supriya Sule formally launched the cell in Mumbai. It will comprise of a 15-member team which will be headed by Priya Patil, a transgender activist. In 2019, the political party had appointed Priya as a member of its state working committee and had become the first party in Maharashtra to nominate an LGBT activist on a prominent political position.
"We felt LGBT community needs equal rights, so we made a separate cell for them", said Supriya Sule, reported Mint.
"NCP was the first party to experiment by setting up Yuvati Congress (young women) cell and now it has established an LGBT cell in an attempt to bring justice to the deprived section," Jayant Patil said at the event. He further added that the party declared forming a dedicated cell for the LGBT community in its election manifesto.
"Glad to announce that NCP has launched an LGBTQIA+ cell in order to voice the issues of the queer and bring them to the mainstream. Unfortunately, the LGBTQIA community is subjected to bullying and violence due to prejudice," said Sule in a series of tweets.