Rahul Mehta’s brassy debut short story collection Quarantine unravels the lives of openly gay Indian-American men — men who are strident in their sexuality, not hiding in pseudo marriages or behind the guise of bisexuality. However, that doesn’t prevent them from being damaged by the various complexities of life — infidelity, heartburn, shady gigolos, past lovers or small-minded relatives.
With the camp classic Dostana and the recent Supreme Court ruling, does he see the emergence of a stronger gay-themed genre in Indian pop culture? “I hope so. And I hope that we continue to see more and more realistic representations of LGBT characters rather than reductive stereotypes. I think it’s so important in helping us move toward a more tolerant and socially-just society,” he says.
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