Still don’t understand the word homophobia: Priya


June celebrates the vibrant hues of the LGBTQ+ community as “Pride Month”. The more we are moving towards the acceptance of individuals and the community in how they truly are, the more beautiful this world is becoming. Actress Priya Banerjee speaks about the LGBTQ+ community and how difficult it was for her to kiss a woman in her new web series Hello Mini. Excerpts:

Q. A lot of actors are uncomfortable doing an intimate scene with the same sex on screen and in your web series, ‘Hello Mini’, you have kissed a woman. How was the experience?

A. I had a kissing scene with Anuja Joshi in Hello Mini, even though we were not portraying bisexual or lesbian characters. The script required to establish certain aspects of our characters. I was not uncomfortable at all and was way more comfortable doing it than I would have ever been with a male co-actor. It is all in the mind.

 Q. Many people in our country are homophobic but a web series like ‘Hello Mini’ aims at projecting that a lesbian or gay loves the same way as a straight person. Tell us your views about it.

 A. I still do not understand the word homophobia because as humans we have our orientation, and choosing to have a same-sex partner is an individual call. No one should have the right or authority to judge anyone based on that.

Q. Do you believe that the entertainment industry and web series such as Made in Heaven, Maaya and Hello Mini play a vital role in changing the mindset and accepting that being gay is normal?

A. Absolutely! And not only OTT platforms but movies such as Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan have proved that people have become much more accepting of same-sex marriage.

Q. Do you think every community should be celebrated for the whole year and not just for a month?

 A. Amazingly, a whole month is dedicated to this community which should be respected and celebrated throughout the year. Society has become more liberal and it is nice to see that many people are coming out without any fear of being judged.

Q. The LGBTQ+ community is all about being confident in your skin and embracing yourself. What are your views on it?

A. We should always be confident and embrace ourselves for who we are regardless of gender, caste, colour or sexual orientation. We should accept and love one another just the way we are and only then we can grow as a race