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LGBTQI+ Activist Brutally Attacked in Delhi, Friends Say 'Not the First Time'

Gopi Shankar Madurai was attacked by a group of 6-7 men near his home in Karol Bagh.

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LGBTQI+ Activist Brutally Attacked in Delhi, Friends Say 'Not the First Time'
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LGBTQI+ activist Gopi Shankar Madurai (ze/they) was allegedly beaten up by a group of 6-7 persons near their home in Delhi's Karol Bagh on Saturday, 11 November.

Madurai, who serves as the south regional representative of National Council for Transgender Persons (NCTP), is one of the few openly queer people in public office.

They were attacked on Saturday night, when they were turning home from a chemist shop, Madurai's friend Iniyan told The Quint. The intersex activist is currently admitted in Sir Ganga Ram Hospital with injuries on various parts of their body.

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What Happened?

Gopi Shankar Madurai had been walking on the road near his home in Karol Bagh when he was allegedly physically assaulted by a group of men.

"I spoke to Gopi just five minutes before this incident happened. Six people came and attacked them on the road. Some Ramakrishna devotees helped and took them to the hospital," their friend Iniyan shared.

"Gopi brother did not know any of the men," he added.

Intersex India – a forum for people from the LGBTQI+ community of which Madurai is coordinator – said that they had done two minor surgeries at the hospital, adding that a nasal surgery was avoided due to an underlying heart condition.

"The activist was beaten up by 5-6 people. He has received minor injuries. No arrests have been made yet because none of the accused been identified," DCP (Central) Shweta Chauhan told The Quint.

A case has been registered by the police in connection with the incident and investigation is underway.

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'Not the First Time'

"This is not the first time that Gopi has been attacked this year. In January, they were attacked in Mahabalipuram. That time also, the police did not help," Hayathi, a friend of the assaulted activist and member of Intersex India, told The Quint.

In January this year, Madurai had alleged that six unidentified persons had approached them on bikes with a political party sticker in Mahabalipuram, and had abused and manhandled them.

Iniyan further shared that Madurai had faced incidents of homophobic verbal abuse numerous times this year.

"Gopi is a representative of the NCTP, which is under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. If he being a government person isn't safe, who is?" questioned Hayathi.

"An attack of this nature against a prominent activist in the capital city is likely to have a chilling effect on future activism in the country. We are deeply concerned about the safety and security of intersex activists in India," a statement issued by Intersex Asia read.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Read and Breaking News at the Quint, browse for more from neon and gender

Topics:  Delhi   LGBT   Homophobia 

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