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#ASIFALAHORE: Tackling Prejudice with Bollywood Romance

The only British Asian drag artist on London’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) cabaret and club scene, Asifa Lahore is embarking on her next project:  a cover of Bollywood’s chart smashing “Tum hi ho” that will reflect South Asian LGBT perspectives and is aimed at LGBT rights.

Through bold music videos, Asifa not only raises LGBT awareness amongst the South Asian community, but deals with serious issues through comedy.

Her previous music videos “Jimmy”, a cover of the classic anthem from Bollywood’s “Disco Dancer”, and “Punjabi Girl”, inspired by “Barbie Girl”, addressed the issues of being British Asian, marriage and of course, being LGBT.

Moving away from comedy, Asifa Lahore’s “Tum hi ho” will adopt a different tone.

The cover will address social taboos but this time in a direct and serious manner.

Asifa told the UK Asian: “I love using comedy to address taboo subjects as it de-stigmatises the issue by poking fun at it.
Comedy is what is expected of me and something I will always do. But at 30, I feel ready to tackle this issue head on and for once I want to say it as it is, rather than laugh at it.”

“Tum hi ho” with its beautifully mesmerising lyrics, captures the emotions of love perfectly.

On choosing this particular song, Asifa said she has chosen it for its simple message of “loving someone unconditionally and submitting to that feeling”.

This is vital as the stigmas surrounding LGBT issues usually dismiss the emotion of falling in love.

As Asifa points out: “Love transcends all barriers of creed, race, sexual orientation, gender, nationality and language”.

With many South Asian LGBT persons frightened of expressing who they really are due to fears including family rejection and family honour, it is time for LGBT South Asians to speak up and erase the stigma.

The only way forward is by creating brave role models such as Asifa:

“Being visible and proudly identifying as LGBT will lead to stronger campaigning, awareness and lobbying. The South Asian LGBT community isn’t going to get anywhere by hiding.”

It is time to speak up and tackle away the taboos hounding LGBT rights.

Punjabi Girl by Asifa Lahore:

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