Pawan Dhall

Pawan Dhall

Pawan Dhall is a Kolkata-based queer activist, archivist, researcher and writer. He was a founding member of Counsel Club, Kolkata (1993-2002), among India’s earliest queer support groups, and edited its house journal 'Pravartak'. He worked with SAATHII from 2002-14 on universal access to health and social justice. He is now associated with Varta Trust as Founding Trustee. His latest publications include 'Queer Potli: Memories, Imaginations and Re-imaginations of Urban Queer Spaces in India' (Queer Ink, 2019) and 'Out of Line and Offline: Queer Mobilizations in ‘90s Eastern India' (Seagull Books, 2020).

  • Vartanama Oct '16

    Beyond human bondage

    By Pawan Dhall

    Spring cleaning in any season can lead to some invaluable finds tucked away in forgotten corners. The handout below – well, excerpts from a handout – is the result of...

  • People Oct '16

    Qatha: Recalling dark room discoveries and more (part 3)

    By Pawan Dhall

    Varta brings you the ‘Queer Kolkata Oral History Project’, an initiative to document five decades of queer lives in Kolkata (1960-2000). Our aim in this project is to go back in...

  • Vartanama Sep '16

    Love is in the . . . memories

    By Pawan Dhall

    Come autumn and they say love is in the air. Or is it in memories and thoughts triggered by scenes in another time, another place?

  • Qatha: Recalling dark room discoveries and more (part 2)

    By Pawan Dhall

    Varta brings you the ‘Queer Kolkata Oral History Project’, an initiative to document five decades of queer lives in Kolkata (1960-2000). Our aim in this project is to go back in...

  • The photograph is of a full moon shining brightly, seen through the branches of a nearly bare tree in the night sky. It occupies the centre of the frame with the broad and thinner branches of the tree forming a mesh across the sky. But none cross the image of the moon, which lies intact within an irregular pentagon formed by the branches. The thinner branches growing off the main ones have scanty leaves on them. Even though the sides of the picture have a black tinge, the light of the moon illuminates the centre of the photograph creating a serene environment. Photo credit: Vahista Dastoor
    Vartanama Aug '16

    Welcome to the new Varta website!

    By Pawan Dhall, Vahista Dastoor

    Hasn’t the subject of gender and sexuality been done to death? Isn’t it all over the media in ever more tantalizing formats?

  • Quote: There was one boy in our locality, one boy he was very interested in sex, and whenever his mother, father was always out on tour, when his mother would go somewhere, he would call all of us, there would be about eight or nine people in the room – there was a room and we used to play dark room.

    Qatha: Recalling dark room discoveries and more (part 1)

    By Pawan Dhall

    Varta brings you the ‘Queer Kolkata Oral History Project’, an initiative to document five decades of queer lives in Kolkata (1960-2000). Our aim in this project is to go back in...

  • This photograph has been taken near the venue of the ‘21st International AIDS Conference’ held at Durban, South Africa from July 18-22, 2016. A large red ribbon, the symbol of HIV and AIDS awareness, stands on a semi-spherical structure under a bright blue sky covered with white clouds. The semi-sphere has colourful engravings of red, blue and green, with much smaller round Braille semi-spheres at various places. Closest to the structure is a park with some visitors sitting on benches; a man in a red shirt can be seen leaning across the red and ochre boundary of the park, while someone wearing a blue shirt and white pants can be seen in a distance to the left. Going further left, a two-storeyed parking enclosed space with red skillion roofs and faded yellow walls with a capital ‘P’ sign can be seen. To the further right of the park, a walkway with a netted roof runs across to the centre supported by thin black pillars at similar intervals. Behind all of these, lie sky-rocketing buildings, five to the left and three to the right. Photo credit: Pawan Dhall
    Clickhappy! Aug '16

    Lens on AIDS 2016

    By Pawan Dhall

    Pawan Dhall does a photo round-up of the ‘21st International AIDS Conference’ held at Durban, South Africa from July 18-22, 2016 The international biennial on HIV (human immuno-deficiency virus) and AIDS...

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