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Performance is beyond gender stereotypes: Former Mr. Gay India Sushant

New Delhi, Oct 9 (IANS) After exploring the world of acting, modelling and hosting, Mr. Gay India 2014 Sushant Divgikar, who will be seen trying his hand at singing as a participant in reality TV show "Sa Re Ga Ma Pa", has urged people not to judge an artiste on the basis of gender.

"Performance is beyond gender stereotypes. To be a good performer, it does not matter whether you are male, female or gay. What plays an important role is your performance. If you are a good performer, people will definitely appreciate your talent.

"Be it acting, dancing or singing or any other XYZ profession, gender can't resist someone from showcasing their skills," Sushant told IANS over phone from Mumbai.

The 28-year-old will be performing as Rani Ko-He-Nur, his drag queen avatar which came into being a year ago, in "Sa re Ga Ma Pa", which will go on air on Zee TV later this month.

Explaining the concept of a drag queen, he said: "A man dresses up in women's clothes and performs in front of public. In the West, it is being followed a lot. On Indian television, it has not been practiced till now. So, I feel blessed and fortunate to perform my art in the form of a drag queen and to put Rani in the forefront.

"In our country, there are many people who are adamant to accept all sorts of people and performers, so through my drag queen get-up, I want people to accept me with open arms and love my new singing avatar."

As Sushant is not a professionally trained singer, he finds competing against other participants a little challenging.

"Though singing is my first love, I have practiced singing only in childhood. Now, I have to take music lessons and rehearse every morning. All other participants in the show would be well-trained, so I am little nervous. But I am excited because life is meant to face challenges."

Sushant is also well-known for supporting the rights of the LGBTQ community. He is extremely happy about the Supreme Court verdict on decriminalising homosexuality.

"After the verdict, I have observed a lot of changes in people. They have become more open. Earlier, LGBTQ people were denied entry into various clubs and several places, but now clubs are organising gay parties and people have become more friendly.

"I would not say that there is a complete transformation in people's mindset, but all these small changes in today's time matter a lot."

--IANS
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