Arnab recently sent us a message on Instagram sharing his new Youtube Video on love. The video featured him and his partner, and you know us. We really wanted to cover their story.
So let’s see what this young boy from Kolkata has to say:
What do we know about Arnab?
I am a finance employee, a lifestyle blogger, and an LGBT inclusion evangelist. I am originally born and brought up in Kolkata. Later, I shifted to Delhi to move out of the cocoon of my comfort.
My childhood has been otherwise good, but unlike most people, I never say school days are my golden days. I hate my school days. Not only was I bullied, but I was also humiliated time and again by my classmates to the extent that I ended up having bitter feelings for them.
I remember back in ninth grade my biology teacher – Neelam Banerjee ( yes I want to name and shame) made me stand up and asked what’s your gender? These incidents have made such a deep impact in my mind that I can’t seem to let them go away that easily. I remember one afternoon my uncle who used to run our family press called me downstairs at the mezzanine floor and questioned about the way I talk and the way I walk. I was 10-years-old then. It made me feel ashamed and scared.
Who was the first person you came out to and when?
I first came out to my mother because she always spied on me and I wanted to stop that. I was agitated and disturbed and realized the only way to make her behave normally is to make her face the truth.
My mom’s reaction was dramatic. She mentioned it was the biggest shock in her life. The first shock being my father’s death. She was a single mother so the last thing I wanted to do was to hurt her. I was heartbroken and sad at her reaction but that did not cause me to doubt my sexuality. From the very first day I knew, I am gay and I was never uncomfortable with the fact about my inner soul.
Tell us about your first relationship
I met Rahul in college. He was well-spoken and humorous. And he came from a good family. That was when I realized that I am not the only one. It opened a window of hope. We would explore places together, watch movies, eat out. It was the strongest bond I felt with a guy back then. We are no longer boyfriends but we are still very much in touch with each other. He is a philosopher, guide and critic, and also Ashraf’s close friend.
Who is Ashraf?
Ashraf and I met through a dating app. He was very cute and sexy and I was head over heels after meeting him. He was warm, innocent and honest. Ashraf has a heart of gold but he is extremely short-tempered. I love how we fight but then can’t let each other go at any cost.
Tell us about the Close-Up ad?
While I am an Instagram addict he is a little more guarded. It was because of my posting spree that we got noticed and after which we got featured in the Close-Up ad.
The video has been extremely well taken. It got over 7 million views in three days. Moreover, we are not celebrities. So you can imagine the power of storytelling and how people connected with it.
How do you both spend time together
We connect at multiple levels. We have the ability to talk crap and crack folkish jokes. Moreover, we both love tea. Ashraf is a Muslim and I am a Hindu. This combination has made us feel closer to humanity as we both realized that religion divides people and love binds them. I always thought my family would have issues with my Muslim boyfriend. However, as it turned out, it quite was the opposite. They did not accept him but they totally loved him.
Inshallah, I see us married in a few years with few dogs, if not kids. I see him walking the fashion week as an esteemed designer and me clapping from the first row with pride.
How have platforms like FSOG made a change
Platforms like FSOG are important. These dialogues have far-fetching impacts on society as a whole. Some are measurable some are not, but they all bring in a positive change by spreading awareness, equality, and love.