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Komal Panwar


This Jaipur Girl Is Getting Raj Govt. On Board For Introducing Fresh Transgender Policies

  • JWB Post
  •  July 15, 2016


There’s news about Transgenders scattered all over the internet, yet how many of us really understand what the term means?

When I met Anshul Bhatt, a Transgender activist, I realized how little I knew about the Transgender community. So, the first thing Anshul taught me was the difference between a Transgender, a Transsexual, and a Crossdresser.

Transgenders are those who do not relate to the body they are assigned, and even when they want to undergo a sex change operation, they can’t really afford it. For example, if a man wants to be a woman, he’ll dress up like one, but he just can’t afford to be her.

A Transsexual is a Transgender, who has undergone a sex change operation, and a Crossdresser is one who doesn’t wish to change their gender but simply chooses to dress up like the other gender.

Thank you, Anshul!

Anshul has been working with helping the Transgender gain their identity. Did you know that Rajasthan didn’t have a single NGO dedicated to helping them claim their identity? She associated herself with a Transgender community called “Nayi Bhor.”

Identity Crisis

My primary reason to associate with “Nayi Bhor” is to help Transgenders get an identity. They don’t have ID cards because they don’t have a gender identity. I met Pushpa Ji of “Nayi Bhor” and first grasped the problem before intervening.

The state should recognize them as citizens. Also, there’s a strange reason why they don’t treat the community seriously. They are very few. You know how minorities are usually sidelined? Such is the case with them, too.

Identity Proof

The identities of Transgenders cannot be verified, their authorities would say. I got in touch with a few Ministers of Rajasthan, who helped me in my struggle with introducing policies for the Trans.

Initially, there were a lot of questions. The authorities were mostly reluctant on releasing ID cards in special categories.

They said that the Transgender would have to prove their identities by getting medical checkups done. They didn’t realize that the Transgender were different from Transsexuals and didn’t have any medical proofs.

They slowly realized that no one would risk being called a Transgender just to avail the benefit of Rs. 200 worth monthly pension. Sad.

Even though the policies are not applicable now, they will soon be.

Taking the best from the rest

The policies are already applicable in Tamil Nadu and Chattisgarh, and so, after an extensive research of the introduced policies, we took the best of both worlds and created a proposition for the Rajasthan Govt.

The Story that catalyzed her decision

I met Neena (name changed) in Karnataka’s ‘Sangam’. Neena was born as a man, and as a little child, she had realized that she didn’t fit in her body. She didn’t feel like dressing up as a boy. She was often teased by her friends for playing “House”, as well as with her tea set.

When she came out of the closet, her single mother didn’t support her. Needless to say, she disowned her. She told me that coming from a Dalit family, it wasn’t much of a problem, choosing to be a Trans. And you know why? Because, the Dalits anyway had no respect whatsoever, so what more would she have lost?

After her mother had passed away, she was the one who took care of her siblings and eventually went to the US and got her sex changed.

Today, she’s the Transgender representative of India, and also, a respected citizen of the country.

The focus needs to be evenly divided

Indian devotion to LGBTQ is mostly dedicated to the Lesbian and Gay individuals. The Transgender are often neglected. Heck, they are the ones who should be given more of preference, because they can’t travel, they can’t show an identity, at least the Lesbian and Gay have genders!

The LGBTQ should unite together and join hands to put an end to the bias.

The ultimate goal

My ultimate goal is to work on something of my own. Maybe a few years later, when I have enough experience to run an organization that introduces new policies for the less-privileged!

In the end, Anshul stressed on how important it is for every person, Transgender or not, to recognize their rights. Because, if activists try so hard to get them what they want, then their awareness of their rights is mandatory.

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