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Dr. Harsha De Silva, calls for a revision of century old laws that discriminate the LGBT+ community in Sri Lanka.


Member of Parliament, Samagi Jana Balawegaya, Dr. Harsha De Silva joined former Sri Lanka cricket captain, Mahela Jayawardene, NPP parliamentarian Dr. Harini Amarasuriya and renowned musician Umaria Sinhawansa in calling for the revision of laws and societal acceptance of the LGBT+ community in Sri Lanka. In an interview with Daily Mirror Online, Tamil Mirror Online and Lankadeepa Online, Dr. Harsha emphasized the position of his party of having the belief that every citizen should be entitled to enjoy equal rights, privileges, and responsibilities. 


Representatives of SJB have previously put forward motions in Parliament proposing the ban of discriminatory and harmful practices against LGBT+ persons such as conversion therapies. These practices, which include electric shock treatment and forcefully showing heterosexual pornography in order to convert LGBT+ people to heterosexuality, severely affect the mental and physical well-being of LGBT+ individuals. Dr. Harsha called for society to be more accepting of people with differences. As much as discrimination is not tolerated towards a citizen’s religion, race, or caste, it should also not be tolerated because of one’s sexual orientation. 


Dr. Harsha further stated that, “the advancement of society should contribute to the revision of century old laws that have unfairly discriminated and targeted LGBT+ individuals.” Furthermore, the MP deemed the arrest of LGBT+ individuals on the basis of these discriminatory laws as unacceptable.  As a parent himself, the parliamentarian urged parents of LGBT+ individuals to be more accepting of their LGBT+ child, instead of further marginalizing them from society. He encouraged families and friends to change such negative mindsets and better understand the reality of their LGBT+ child. He further emphasized the importance of a happy parent-child relationship rather than breaking one apart from the family. Dr. Harsha also urged members of the LGBT+ community to continue playing their role in creating wider awareness of the issues they face, to the greater society and he also urged society to become more tolerant and accepting of the differences between LGBT+ people and heterosexual individuals and to take steps towards creating an inclusive society. He stated that a divided society would result in failure and a successful society can be achieved through unity amongst differences. The MP concluded by stating that being inclusive to different religious and ethnic backgrounds as well as gender and sexual orientations would result in a colorful and strengthened society. 


Better Together, a series that brings together leaders in sport, business, politics and culture to highlight discrimination faced by the LGBT+ community can be viewed online via Daily Mirror Online, Lankadeepa Online and Tamil Mirror Online.  

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