When I first heard the news story of Jasvir Ram Ginday, I was saddened beyond words. Mr. Ginday was a London-based banker, who had cruelly murdered his wife, and then set her body on fire in an incinerator. He had done all of this in order to hide his sexual orientation.
He was gay, but despite had married the beautiful and educated 24-years-old Varkha Rani last march having met her through a match-maker. He had been a frequent visitor to gay clubs in Birmingham for many years and had many gay friends. His bride had come to UK after being granted visa in August 2013. A month later, her remains were discovered hidden in the back lawn of the house, which she had shared with her husband and his family. According to the neighbors, the victim had lived a lonely and sad life after marriage as evident from her expressions whenever they caught her sight. The difficulties in their marriage were obvious. Mr. Ginday had murdered her when she had threatened to reveal his secret to the family. According to him, he had known his sexual orientation since the age of twelve; however, had kept it hidden from his family fearing their dismay.
Our society at large is to be blamed for such incidents. This horrifying story bares our society so truthfully like nothing ever can. We come across many such stories in which people are forced to live in contradiction to how they feel or in which they are made to marry just because it is considered the right thing and the right time to do so. Such unions usually end in disasters – ruining the lives of everyone involved, and sometimes, they may even turn into tragedies like they did in the case of Varkha Rani.
In another story that happened to an acquaintance of mine, she got married to a guy who showed no interest in her physically. It was later revealed that he was homosexual. She then got divorced from him but this left her mentally scarred. She had gone into her marriage believing that her union would be a happy one. However, her mother-in-law had only thought of her as a cure for the homosexuality of her only son, which had turned out to be no cure after all. Her mother-in-law could not bear the thought of having no grandchildren at all, and therefore, had decided to put an innocent girl’s life on the line. Her son had played along. However, he had not been able to pretend for long.
In another story, a young bride had travelled to join her Pakistani husband. After a few months of contention, her husband had finally admitted that he was homosexual. He had also told her that he is going to divorce her soon as his partner was mad at him for getting married, and he could not take it anymore.
All of this mostly has to do with us as a society showing non-tolerance for people who feel differently. Our denunciation of anything that deviates from what we perceive to be normal forces many to live a lie. They cannot come out, fearing they would be judged, and even if they are able to muster up the courage of stating their truth, they are told that what they are feeling is wrong. Usually marriage is then suggested as a cure from their “problems”. As a consequence, they have no choice but to live a double-life. By doing so, they not only have to travel down the ‘guilt-road’, they jeopardize others’ lives as well.
The problem is not that people do not want to be honest. The problem is that too many people are not ready to hear the truth. Homosexuality is a ‘no-go zone’ for many families. However, it does not mean that it is not present in our society. Many say that homosexuality comes naturally while others believe it to be a disease of the mind or body. I am not a doctor, so I cannot comment on the physiological phenomena of the body. However, being a psychologist, I have not come across any substantial evidence suggesting that homosexuality is a mental disorder. Having said that, it does not matter which theory you support, both result in homosexuals having no choice at all. If they had any, they would have gone the easy way; they would have managed to find happiness in doing what the society approves of, but they cannot. Who would want to live a double life? They are helpless in terms of how they feel, and there is nothing in this world they can do to change that. They also should not be forced to change either.
I think it is high time for us to realize what Rumi once said: "Beyond our ideas of right and wrong, there is a field.”