JOHI: The transgender community exists in Pakistan but no one knows accurate facts and figures about them, particularly in Sindh. The community has completely been shunned by our society and the government. No one is ready to accept their real identity. They have been nurtured to behave distinctly to be deemed as disdain. They have deliberately been indulged in the curse of beggary and slavery. They are deterred from societal behaviour and their stories are a mystery. It is appalling that they feel suffocation while interacting with the common man of our society.
The Supreme Court in 2012 granted them the right to employment, to hold CNICs and to vote. The Sindh cabinet reserved 0.5 per cent quota in government jobs for transgender persons. Recently, a series of laws has gone into place to protect the transgender community across Pakistan. Regrettably, the implementation of the laws seems to be a hollow promise. As per a report, no single transgender has been enrolled in schools in district Dadu, Sindh. If no one is getting an education, how is it possible for them to avail their 0.5 per cent quota in government jobs? I request our society to accept these people as family members, friends, colleagues and neighbours. I also urge the federal and provisional governments to provide them educational opportunities because they are curious to learn and contribute to the vision of the state. There is an imminent need to let them decide what they want to be instead of discarding them to a distinct category.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 14th, 2020.