When Shivakumar noticed a lack of awareness, tolerance and support amongst Vizagites for the LGBTQ community, he decided to create a safe haven himself instead of waiting for someone else to do it. It was then that he met April — a transgender woman — through mutual friends, and she was thinking along the same lines. Taking everything they had gone through in the spirit of experience, April and Shivakumar founded Nestam and after that, like they say, there was no looking back.
Celebrating their first anniversary this August, Nestam Vizag, apart from being a support group for anyone in need, conducts awareness drives in government schools to fight misconceptions and teach them that the LGBTQ are normal and nothing to be ridiculed at. April and countless transgender individuals like her are personally affected whenever the transgenders are called hijras. On the other hand, Hijra, also known as third gender in India, is a cultural identity with its own rituals and customs, unique to our country.
Nestam plans to reach the next level and start creating awareness in colleges.
As awesome as it can get: An Indian website by and for transgenders
April is working on developing a support website called TransgenderIndia. Nestam Vizag is supported by a team of lawyers and doctors. Any person in need of guidance can contact them via their FB page or call Shivakumar at India has come a long way from being the country it was under colonial rule. We are an independent, democratic community that fought oppression with peace and went ahead to form a constitution that serves the well-being of our country.
And yet, we chose to keep on some colonial laws that seem to hold no prominence in Section of the Indian Penal Code is a shining bright example of that. Talking about homosexuality is such a deep taboo in our country that most kids in India grow up confused about their sexuality only to become adults and be told that it is illegal. InThe High Court of Delhi decriminalised the law with respect to homosexuality but the Supreme Court overturned the decision in after it was challenged that the decision should be Parliamentary and not Judiciary.
India took a huge leap forward when the Supreme Court recognised transgender people as a legal third gender a wrongful recognition, but a recognition just the same and determined gender identity to be the fundamental right of every citizen in The Supreme Court recently agreed to revisit Section and have it reviewed by a five-member constitutional bench in lieu of a petition submitted by the Naz foundation, a Delhi based NGO.
So denying that based on gender is inhuman. Homosexuality is not as abnormal as people make it out to be. I know intelligent and prominent people who are homosexuals, they are as normal as a heterosexual. We used to get cases of homosexuals where one of the partners wanted to change gender due to taboo.
We should stop being ignorant and stigmatising them. Sometimes even childhood abuse plays a part in a person being homosexual, so one must be tolerant.
Rohini, Gynecologist, Sanjivi Hospital. While most countries embrace it there are far too many reasons why it does not seem ideal to create a legal right for them in our country.One can easily imagine what it is like to feel smothered under the expectations of the world, but to be born in a form that you do not fit in, its unimaginable right?
But that is what Shanti, a 64 year old transsexual LGBTQ activist and countless other transgenders like her go through. Despite feeling disconnected, she had no true understanding of what she was going through, not even till she joined a local college to study Engineering. It was only then when Illustrated Weekly came out on a story about Hijras third gender who identify themselves as neither male nor female that she found the courage to even consider something different.
She wondered if she should run away from home and join them, lending her the freedom to be at least halfway through what she wanted to be.
With the knowledge gained from the article, a newly empowered Shanti begun the journey of finally getting her body to match her mind. I used to pray to God to give me the body of a woman because He must have clearly realised his mistake by now.
Instead, when science had offered up a solution, I was only too glad to grab it. After visiting various doctors, some of whom wrongly suggested that she join a mental institution, she was diagnosed a transsexual. It was in that she began taking hormone injections for the sex reassessment surgery. Chaos ensued at home, because the truth could no longer be kept hidden and her father suffered a stroke he never recovered from.
She tried to reason with her family but to no avail. I did not want happiness or comfort at the cost of losing them. Despite it all, she has not let herself wallow in self-pity. After a stint in Civil Engineering, Shanti has worked for the betterment of the lives of transsexuals, been a communication coordinator — a conduit between th e LGBTQ community and NGOs, counselled countless lost transsexual and LGBQ souls like hers and worked on various projects that raised awareness on HIV for the last 20 years.
She has also found the courage through the years to dress up as the woman that she is. What else would I want? Your email address will not be published.
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Vizag talked to them to find out more about their lives. Kohl-lined eyes, rouged cheeks, flirty smiles, glittering attire and a thundering clap — this is the only side of a Hijra one gets to see. Uninhibited both with their blessings and anger, the third gender of India are believed to be the bearers of fertility and luck, despite the emasculation some of them go through to join the sect. Prejudice and disgust has driven them to the fringes of society where they now live in closed communes.
The Hijras who reside here are hesitant to talk and away from prying eyes, their true nature is on display. Few here hide behind a smile. One can clearly see the hurt in the eyes of these abandoned people, who are forced to resort to begging. To each young Hijra ostracized by her family and society, it is the elders who provide safety and security — a home, family and a purpose to live for.
One of the elders Siri, who has been on her own since she was 12, agrees to talk to us. We have a reputation as being short-tempered. There are some amongst us who fall in love and marry too, what could be more human than that? Discrimination and ignorance continue to threaten the livelihoods and the very lives of these Hijras.
While once this sect of eunuchs, intersex, and transgender people were considered sacred before Colonisation, maybe it is time we grant them back their stolen respect. When I ask the same person who says this to offer me a job, he hesitates.
There are leaders in Hijras of Visakhapatnam who will never ever let their lives be fortuned in a better way. Its absolutely absurd as they talk to the media everytime the same just to gain sympathy.
They LOVE to beg and go for sex work as they earn more money than in any other profession. Your email address will not be published.
The Pride Of A Rainbow
Andhra Pradesh government hijras india jobs lgbtq relationship security transgender visakhapatnam vizag. Search Search for: Search. Follow us Facebook Twitter instagram pinterest.The date represents the starting point of the Muslim era.
Muhammad himself dated his correspondence, treaties, and proclamations after other events of his life. In —78 ah the Ottoman government, still keeping the Hijrah era, began to use the solar Julian year, eventually creating two different Hijrah era dates, resulting from the differences between a solar and a lunar year. As for those who emigrated for the sake of God after having been persecuted, We will provide them with a fine abode in this life; yet better still is the reward of the life to come, if they but knew it They came to be his devoted supporters, constituting three-fourths of the Muslim army at the Battle of Badr ce.
When no one of their number was chosen to the caliphate to succeed Muhammad, they declined in influence as a group and eventually merged with other Muslims who had settled in Medina.
Article Media. Info Print Cite. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback. Hijrah Islam. See Article History. Get exclusive access to content from our First Edition with your subscription.
Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. For more detail about the life of Muhammad and the rise of Islam, see Islam; Islamic world. History at your fingertips. Sign up here to see what happened On This Dayevery day in your inbox! Email address. By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Notice. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. More About.The website aims to educate transgender youth and give them positive role models to look up to.
Neysara Rai was 23 years old when she came out to her family about her gender identity — that of a transgender woman.
My sisters and their husbands thought that I was wanting to be a hijra. The notion that all transgender persons want to become hijras is not an uncommon one in the country.
The website aims to be a platform where transgenders can discuss doubts regarding gender identities and share personal stories and experiences. It also will serve as an information bank that can be referred to at any time. Hijra may be a dignified name of an ancient Indian community, but is a derogatory slur when used to refer to a transgender person who doesn't belong to the Hijra community. She was also abused as a child. I feel these 10 years of my life affected my child psychology a lot.
This fiddled with my psychosexual development as a child. From a very early age I was a lonely child. I was too scared to play with my male cousins or classmates.
When I came out to my family about my gender identity, I told them my child abuse history and that I think it could be a reason that I feel this way. Her father cried that day — he had never thought a male child could be molested — and apologized to her for failing to protect her.
Today, Neysara runs a business in Mangaluru but no one other than her immediate family knows she is a transsexual woman. It is a more dignified way of living. The moment you come out, you are judged. They do a lot of good work but only to help the hijra people. She states that, "The current hijra activists have failed to help the transgender umbrella meaningfully. Instead because of the organized sex trade and begging that is done by the visible hijra community, young trans kids are afraid of coming out as trans, because they will be immediately misjudged by their parents and society to be hijra.
The idea of starting this non-funded project cropped up from a WhatsApp group that the group had to connect and help the transgender community. Every month, the group gets calls on its 24x7 helpline from around transgender youth facing gender issues. They are then assigned into smaller groups under the mentorship of persons who have transitioned.
Depression among young transgender people is naturally also very high leading to higher suicide rates, she says. They are counselled and explained that they too can work in banks or software companies and lead ordinary lives. Neysara goes on to talk about how not all those who belong to the Hijra community can be viewed as perpetrators.
Last year a hijra Guru from Vizag burnt a hijra woman to death, after chopping off both her breasts. This was a punishment for trying to run away from him. If it happens to women, it becomes an issue. Maybe because like any other Indian family, my family too never spoke about sex to children. The group is looking for volunteers who can help them grow the site with their skills.
Loading data Skip to main content. As awesome as it can get: An Indian website by and for transgenders. Features Tuesday, July 12, - The website is run by six people from across the country.