Attendees of India’s first LGBTI job fair (Photo: Twitter)
India’s southern city of Bengaluru hosted the country’s first LGBTI job fair on Friday (12 July).
Organizers, Pride Circle, said companies offering jobs across IT, admin and housekeeping attended the job fair.
International companies such as Goldman Sachs, Ford, Uber, Accenture, and Intel attended the fair, according to CNN.
CNN also reported big Indian companies such as Godrej and VIP Industries also attended.
Making history today: 350 attendees, 50 Nat’l & Int’l speakers, tons of Corp. sponsors, NGOs, kudos @pride_circle for inspiring RISE conference and India’s 1st LGBTI job fair ! #RiseAndGrow #Canada4Pride @CanadainIndia pic.twitter.com/y4iRVoKomb
— Nicole Girard (@NicoleG_001) July 12, 2019
‘Either you meet queer people in the pride marches, or you meet them at gay parties, or you would meet them at film festivals,” Pride Circle co-founder Srini Ramaswamy told CNN Business.
‘And in all these three big spaces, you would probably not go and ask: “Hey do you want a job?”‘
The program includes a day-long conference with renowned speakers and booths by 20 queer-owned businesses.
Former Mr Gay India and renowned drag queen, Sushant Divgikar, spoke on Friday.
Ramaswamy is also working on a database of LGBTI talent.
He previously said they launched in Bengaluru, also known as Bangalore, because of its reputation as an open city.
He has plans to hold similar job fairs in Mumbai, New Delhi and Kolkata.
Society slow to act
India’s Supreme Court in September last year ruled the country’s anti-gay law was unconstitutional.
Section 377 of India’s colonial-era Penal Code punished gay sex with up to 10 years in prison. But, the Supreme Court said it violated rights to privacy.
Indians, therefore, celebrated the decriminalization of an estimated 4.5 million LGBTI people.
But, LGBTI activists and leaders warned it would take time for society and businesses to accept homosexuality.
A local firm, Intuit India, recently promised to extend spousal benefits to same-sex couples. It also vowed to fund gender affirmation surgery.
Recently, both Uber and Netflix in India launched LBGTI-friendly campaigns.
Uber India launched a campaign for a rainbow heart emoji. The transportation network company also changed its route map rainbow.
Netflix India, meanwhile, marked Valentine’s Day this year with an adorable romance between two young men
The short film, directed by Reema Sengupta, shows two young men fall in love in an Indian city.
But, Reuters reported in February that while large corporations like Uber were making efforts to become more LGBT-inclusive, smaller firms did not see a need for diversity.