Blue Diamond Society
|Purpose||As a community based organization, Blue Diamond Society aims to educate and assist with the sexual health, human rights, and the well-being of gender and sexual minorities in Nepal.|
The Blue Diamond Society(Nepali: नील हीरा समाज) is an LGBT rights organization in Nepal. It was founded in 2001 to advocate to change the existing laws against homosexuality and to advocate for the rights of Nepal's marginalized gay, transgender and other sexual minority communities. BDS also aims to educate the Nepalese on proper sexual health, advocate for queer minorities in local governments, encourage artful expression of LGBTQ+ youth, and document violence against Nepalese queers. Another contribution to Nepal's LGBTQ+ communities is to provide care, counseling, and services to victims of HIV/AIDS. Blue Diamond Society is currently led by Executive Director Manisha Dhakal, and was founded and led until 2013 by Sunil Babu Pant, the first gay legislator in Nepal's history and one of 29 experts at the meeting for The Yogyakarta Principles. One of the Blue Diamond Society's most recent accomplishment occurred when Sunil Babu Pant and fellow human rights activists filed a case with Nepal's Supreme Court in 2007 that led to a verdict by the Court ordering the government to repeal all laws that explicitly discriminate against members of the LGBT community. The law also ordered the government to legalize gay marriage.
The society's visions are:
- To create a society that respects and values each sexual and gender minorities.
- To create a society where every person of a sexual and gender minority can have equal rights and the same dignity of heterosexual, cisgender persons.
- To create a societty where all sexual and gender minorities have hope and equal opportunities.
LGBTQ+ Achievements in Nepal: All with the encouragement or aid of Blue Diamond Society
- During The Supreme Court ruling in 2007 that BDS helped bring about, the Nepalese government decided to grant basic human rights to sexual and gender minorities in Nepal.
- The Blue Diamond Society has expanded their offices to 35 cities throughout Nepal.
- BDS worked will local governments and the Supreme Court to have the Election Commission of Nepal and local census forms offer a "third gender" in addition to "male" and "female".
- A transgender woman, Bishnu Adhikary received full citizenship and identification as ruled by the Supreme Court Nepal in 2007. This has encouraged other transgender citizens to demand correct legal identification with their correct gender. Continuous lobbying, delegations and sit-in programs from the local to national level have been carried out by the Blue Diamond Society.
- More than 15 community-based organizations registered their offices in their locality and became members of the Federation of Sexual and Gender Minorities in Nepal.
- The Nepalese government allocated 3 million rupees to the development and advancement of LGBTQ+ people.
- The Federation of Sexual and Gender Minorities in Nepal has been established to strengthen the networks between community-based organizations working in different parts of Nepal. This is an umbrella organization under which Blue Diamond Society is also a member.
- Nai Prakashan, one of the most prestigious literary publication houses established an award to recognize the most prominent LGBTQ+ writers.
- The text book of social science in the Bachelors and Masters of the Government education Curriculum added a definition for the term "LGBT."
- Nepal created a forum for LGBTQ+ youth where career help and educational support is offered.
- BDS created and now endorses "Pink Tourism," where Nepalese LGBTQ+ information, seminars, and activities are provided to tourists.
Blue Diamond Society aims to educate and assist with the sexual health, human rights, and well-being of gender and sexual minorities in Nepal. Here are their "numbers."
- More than 90,000 LGBT people have benefited from education and BDS's HIV prevention services.
- About 700 MSM (men who have sex with men) and LGBT persons are currently living with HIV/AIDS with the support and treatment of BDS.
- More than 50% of the Constituent Assembly in Nepal have been educated or "sensitized" to LGBT issues in Nepal.
- Communities that are not in an urban setting receive services through 31 "prevention intervention centers," 5 regional and support centers, and 5 regional human rights posts
In 2012, Blue Diamond Society was accused of corruption and nepotism, which led to serious financial trouble for the organization. BDS responded by saying that "called conspiracies to defame the society and weaken the campaign launched for the rights of third gender people and sexual minorities," whilst never really addressing the merits of the accusation. The Nepalese government in turn refuted these corruption charges.
In 2007, Blue Diamond Society won the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission's (IGLHRC) Felipa de Souza Award.
- LGBT rights in Nepal
- List of LGBT rights organizations
- Intersex civil society organizations
- Intersex human rights
- Intersex rights by country
- "Welcome to Blue Diamond Society." Web. 15 February 2016.
- Bhandair, Bibek. "Nepal to Hold its First LGBTI Sporting Event." Huffington Post. Huffpost Queer Voices. Web. 15 February 2016.
- Chang, Jenni and Dazols, Lisa. "Nepal's Sunil Pant Keeps His Country at the Forefront of LGBT Rights. Huffington Post. Huffpost Queer Voices. Web. 15 February 2015.
- Ogle, The Reverend Canon Albert. "Blue Diamond Society, Nepal, bravely faces its greatest challenge. San Diego Gay & Lesbian News. Web. 15 February 2015.
- Being LGBTI in Asia (February 29, 2016). "The dawn of a national intersex movement: The first national intersex workshop in Nepal". Medium. Retrieved 2016-07-30.
- UNDP in Asia and the Pacific (July 30, 2016). "Being LGBTI in Asia". Retrieved 2016-07-30.