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Not my fault that I'm gay: 20-year-old in suicide note

Friday, July 12, 2019 • Tamil Comments

Not my fault that Im gay: 20-year-old in suicide note

A 20-year-old from Mumbai, who moved to Chennai to work at a salon, committed suicide after reportedly facing harassment in the city for his sexual orientation.

Identified as Avinshu Patel, the boy's body was found near the Neelangarai beach on July 2. He had spoken to his friend the previous evening, informing him about his decision to end his life. "He sent me a text around 2.30 afternoon saying he was at a mall with a friend. They had gone out for lunch. Just two hours later he called me and told me he wanted to end his life. He was crying. But did not explain the reason for the drastic decision. He just hung up. I tried calling him back, several times, but there was no answer. At around 10 in the night, he put up that Facebook post, after which his phone was switched off," Avi's friend stated.

Before taking the drastic step, Avi had posted a suicide note on Facebook mentioning that it was not his fault that he was born gay. "Everyone knows I am a boy. But the way I walk, think and talk is like a girl. People in India do not like that. Please do not blame my family. Help them. We are poor. I love my mom, dad and sister. I thank them for supporting me. It is not my fault that I was born gay," his post read.

Despite Section 377 being decriminalized by the Supreme Court in September 2018, queer people still face harassment. Suicide, however, is not the solution and there are several LGBTQ organizations and support groups in and around the city that can be contacted any day. Following are some helplines you can reach out to, in case you are feeling suicidal -

Sneha suicide prevention centre: 044-24640050
Queerythm: 9745545559 (English, Malayalam, and Tamil)
iCall: 022-25521111 (for members of LGBTQIA)
Sahay: 1800-2000-113 (24X7 LGBT toll-free number) 
Sahodari: 7639741916 (for the transgender community)
Sahodaran: 9841865423 or 044-23470486 (for members of LGBTQIA+ in Tamil Nadu)

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