Pratik took to social media to share what exactly happened during the event
The president of the students' union of the prestigious Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) in Mumbai, who is queer and identifies as a gender-fluid person, has said they were stopped from participating in an event over their outfit.
Pratik Permey, who is from a village in Assam, was invited to the 19th Ambedkar Memorial Lecture as the representative of the students' union. However, according to them, they were not allowed to participate in the event for being "inappropriately" dressed.
Pratik took to social media to share what exactly happened during the event through a video post. In the video, Pratik said that just before five minutes of the event, a professor and few men from the organising committee told them, "In an event like this, you can't wear something like that."
"I was wearing a blouse and a skirt," said Pratik in the video, adding they felt "humiliated, discriminated" and said that their fundamental right to expression was violated. Pratik said, "It is not fine to dictate someone on what they should wear" and "I felt the outfit I was wearing was representing me in my truest form."
"I am a tribal person from a village, I don't wear so many clothes," Pratik said, defending the outfit. "What happened with me was wrong! And I want people to really stop speculating and controlling how my body will look in public and private spaces. It is my identity and I will express myself how I want to," they wrote.
While there has been no official reaction from the institution on the matter, a professor from TISS told Times of India, "TISS is known for its inclusive nature with all supportive mechanisms in place for students of all genders and identities to co-exist. If there has been any incident where any student feels discriminated against, we will look into the matter. All students are assured of an inclusive atmosphere on the campus."