Transgender rickshaw driver goes viral in India
The story on Manju, a transgender auto-rickshaw driver in Mumbai has gone viral on social media.
Facebook user Poonam Kirchi shared Manju’s story after noticing her long, pink nails.
‘So happy to meet this gracious autowaali from Bombay’ Poonam Kirchi wrote.
‘Such long nails?’ Poonam Kirchi asked her driver.
‘Sister, I am preparing for Eid’, Manju replied in ‘a sweet humble voice’.
Poonam Kirchi talked to Manju and found out she has a boyfriend. Manju used to work in a hotel but was fired due to her sexual orientation and gender identity, according to Poonam Kirchi’s Facebook post.
Now, she works as a rickshaw driver but dreads working at night as passengers tease her.
‘So proud to see her fight against all odds and rides like a queen on the street of Mumbai’ Poonam Kirchi wrote.
The post has received an outpouring of support
‘Hats off to Manju’, one user wrote. ‘Amazing nails.. And her smile’, another said.
India’s Supreme Court in 2014 recognized trans identities as a third gender.
But, the community remains marginalized. Families and employers shun trans individuals.
India’s newly-elected government plans to re-introduce a controversial transgender rights bill within its first 100 days in office.
Indian transgender group, Sampoorna, described the bill as a ‘great travesty of justice’.
‘In the name of empowering us, this bill further attempts to criminalize and regulate our identities through arbitrary and draconian means’ a spokesperson told Gay Star News.
‘It must be opposed at all costs’.
The transgender community has witnessed growing visibility.
In the recent general elections, transgender voters were allowed to cast their ballots as a third gender for the first time
A handful of trans and intersex candidates also ran for office. Sneha Kale made headlines as the first-ever trans woman to run in the general election.
India’s first Miss Trans Queen aslo joined one of the country’s largest political parties.
Trans gurus also made history earlier this year by leading a religious procession.
Violence continues, however. One trans politician running for office in Hyderabad went missing during her election campaign.
Earlier this year, a man decapitated a trans priestess in her temple.
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Author: Rik Glauert