US President Donald Trump lauded Bollywood gay romantic comedy ‘Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan’ on Friday. President Trump’s praise for the film came in the wake of a tweet posted by human rights campaigner and LGBTQ+ activist Peter Tatchells social media post praising the Ayushmann Khurrana starrer.
India: A new #Bollywood rom-com featuring a gay romance is hoping to win over older people, following the decriminalisation of homosexuality. Hurrah! http://ow.ly/mcQs50yro76 @TheQueerAsia @beinglgbti @cadrsunilgupta @NazProjectLdn
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Given Trump administration’s view on gay rights, the ‘great’ tweet praising an Indian movie championing the cause, took twitterati by surprise. The tweet may be seen as a departure from Trump’s earlier view on the issue just ahead of his second presidential bid.
Trump has repeatedly touted himself as an ally of the LGBT+ community, despite his administration curtailing the rights of trans people, including banning them from military service and urging the Supreme Court to ensure gay employees are not protected under the Civil Rights Act.
Trump’s comment comes ahead of his 36-hour standalone visit to India. He will be travelling to Ahmedabad and Agra, apart from New Delhi. Trump is expected to be welcomed in Gujarat by 7-10 million people enroute to the Motera stadium.
Gay sex was made legal by India’s Supreme Court in 2018 after judges cast off colonial-era legislation.
‘Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan’ released on February 21 in India. The film stars Ayushmann Khurrana and debutant Jitendra Kumar in a small town setup, and also features the ‘Badhai Ho’ pair of Neena Gupta and Gajraj Rao. The film is written and directed by debutant Hitesh Kewalya.
The movie is a standalone sequel to the 2017 film ‘Shubh Mangal Saavdhan’. The film stars Ayushmann Khurrana as a gay man, and is being touted as the first mainstream gay love story in Bollywood.