Tuesday, March 24, 2009


We are all familiar with a group of people, dressed in female clothing, wearing heavy make-up, clapping their hands, singing, dancing and at times making vulgar gestures. While most of us see them in the streets, many of us come across them on occasions such as weddings and celebrations of child births. These are no aliens. They are people whose identity is shrouded in myths and false portrayal. While it is true that these are people belonging to the third gender, portraying womanhood in a man’s body, they always remain subject to ridicule, laughter, fun and injustice. Unlike in other parts of the world, the attitude towards hijra in our society is very discriminatory and biased. Hijras are denied health and psychological/psychotherapeutic assistance. Victims of gender identity problem, these hijras carry out castrations without any medical and psychological aid. They indulge in self-remedy which includes taking hormones without prescription, using silicone injections and at extreme, auto-castration. There is no one there to understand them and find solutions to their problems. In short, we, the respected members of the society refuse to respect the hijras taking the very first step towards marginalizing them, only because they are born with sexual deformity. The very next step we take towards not accepting their identity is by giving them away to the eunuch community and adhering to the stereotype that today or tomorrow, they will bring nothing but disgrace to the family.

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