Candid: A Queer Feminist Baithak

Candid aims to create a public platform for open ended discussions on questions and issues pertinent to our times. It is an invitation to anyone interested in thinking deeply but candidly on questions of gender and sexuality, culture and politics. Each baithak is organized around a specific theme with an accompanying set of questions, and features a speaker whose role will be to present brief opening remarks that can lead into free flowing discussions amongst participants.

Gendered Anatomy of Cordon and Search Operations in Kashmir


Crackdowns, a common feature of counterinsurgency in the nineties in Kashmir, can be traced back to the landscape and lexicon as CASOs, particularly post the 2016 uprising and continued unabated even during the pandemic lockdown. 

However, the operations have escaped a critical gendered analysis. We looked at the ways in which these operations have allowed an intrusive military presence into women’s intimate spaces. As we commemorate Kashmiri Women’s Resistance day, the baithak opens up ways of understanding what are seen as “normal” occurrences and rendered largely invisible as a form of violence. This session is spearheaded by Samreen Mushtaq, Research Fellow at CSGS.

Decolonizing Queerness in Northeast India

Candid March 26

Queerness as processes of “becoming, being and expressions” have been distorted historically through IPC 377, British colonial law and later through American-Eurocentric categories, definitions and imaginations of LGBT popularized through pride marches, rainbow idioms, English vocabularies, popular culture, etc.

In a way, this culmination has led to the erasure of indigenous queerness, especially in the north-eastern India that is manifested in all aspects of lives; culturally, socially, communitarian. In our discussion, we will look at the possibilities of reclaiming queerness in the region by decolonizing queerness. This session is spearheaded by Kumam Davidson Singh, Co-Founder of the Chinky Homo Project.

A Candid Conversation with Raina Roy

Candid Raina (new)

Raina Roy is a trans activist and director of Sambhabona Kolkata. She is also a founding member of Pratyay Gender Trust and has been working as an activist for twenty years. She also worked with Manas Bangla, briefly as a supervisor and she worked in Delhi with Azaad Foundation as a counsellor and Society Human Alliances and Needs; as a project manager for their Project with Sex workers. 

She has conducted several workshops and seminars about gender all over India. She has also organised Take Back the Night, Kolkata. She has directed several plays about LGBTQ workshops. She is one of the founders of Amra Odbhuth an art collective working towards creating more performance LGBTQ spaces.