Members of the LGBT community have a very hard time in India because under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, homosexuality is punishable by law and the subject is pretty much taboo.
In that respect alone The Other Love Story is a ground-breaking move. The series is set in Bangalore in the 1990’s and portrays the love story between two young women, Aachal and Aadya.
During this era lesbian relationships were very much in the closet (even more so than they are now) and the first episode shows them both meeting each other for the first time.
The audience very quickly gets a sense of the ordinariness of the girls lives and they start to grow closer as they interact in person and over the phone. There is an innocence about them both as they explore their feelings for each other.
Heterosexual relationships are hard enough in India as family, politics and attitudes play a strict part in whether they are deemed suitable by others, which means LGBT relationships are pretty much impossible to carry out. This is why this web series is so desperately needed, not just for lesbian women in India, but to women anywhere that are still in the closet or are dealing with prejudice from others regarding their sexuality.
A few weeks ago a lesbian couple from Mumbai both tried to commit suicide as they had been forbidden to see each other after someone reported them for cuddling. One succeeded and died while the other survived.
This is a tragic example of what can happen to members of the LGBT community in India when others find out about their relationship. Falling in love is not a crime and more recognition is needed in the media.
The Other Love Story is a step in the right direction as it normalizes same sex relationships. Falling in love is not a crime. Prejudice and homophobia is.