Karachi's transgender community protests against rising violence

Civil society demonstration was organised to highlight plight of transgender people in the city

Muhammad Salman Khan December 08, 2018
Transgender community and civil society activist protest against rise in hate crime and violence towards the transgender persons in Karachi. PHOTO: COURTESY SHEHRIYAR SHEHRII

KARACHI: The transgender community and members of the civil society protested outside the Karachi Press Club against rise in incidents of violence against transgender people in the metropolis on Friday.

The protest was organised to highlight the plight of the community in the city, which according to many protesters was not being taken seriously by the police administration, giving rise to hate crime and violence against transgender people.

Addressing the protesters, transgender activist from PECHRA Shahzadi Rai said, "We have registered many FIRs in hope of bringing an end to violence against the transgender community, but the Karachi police have not been able to take any concrete action towards the perpetrators."

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Shahzadi further demands that the IG Sindh takes notice of the issues facing the transgender community and an immediate action is taken against those responsible for targetting transgender people.

Another transgender activist Sarah Gill, while speaking to The Express Tribune said, “The police in Karachi is not taking issues concerning the transgender community seriously, whenever we go to them to register our complaint of any incidence of violence, we are refused our right of lodging an FIR.”

She laments that violence against transgender community is not even considered violence. "We have to post our videos on social media to draw media and police attention to highlight our plight and seek justice," Gill added.

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Veteran transgender activist Bindiya Rana from GIA (Gender Interactive Alliance) told The Express Tribune that around 10 to 15 cases of violence against the transgender community have been reported this year in Karachi alone.

"Every day we come across cases of unjust police action and illegal arrests of transgender people that is depriving them of their livelihoods including begging and dancing at functions," she remarked.

"If the authorities are serious about helping us [transgender community] then the government must establish vocational training centres to provide us with decent employment opportunities," Rana added.


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