Protest March to condemn violence against Hijras November 16, 2008Posted by humsafar in 859984, Uncategorized.
Tags: Gay, Hijras, Humsafar Trust Gay India TG Transgender MSM Indian-gay,, india, lawyers, Mumbai, police, Queer Azadi, sec 377, violence
Queer Azadi Mumbai organized a press conference and public protest on November 13, 2008 to condemn violence against Hijras. It was organized by the Humsafar Trust in association with Stree Sangama, Labia, Gay Bombay, Sakhi Char Chowgi, etc. and supported by Lawyers Collective. The press meet at the Mumbai Marathi Patrakar Sangh was attended by a packed audience of press, media, lawyers, human rights activist, women support groups, LGBT community and many youngsters.
Sumathi from Sangama, Bangalore spoke about the horrific arrests, abuse and torture by the police of Hijras and activists of Sangama in Bangalore last week. Many Hijras have been sexually molested and some even forced to leave the city. It si a reign of terror there, she said. Gauri of Sakhi Char Chowgi said that Hijras deal with violence everyday throughout their lives. She detailed how they do not have any rights and also have no one to turn to. She tearfully pleadede everyone there to help her clan live with dignity and basic human rights. Anand Grover of Lawyers Collective assured Gauri that things are moving in the right direction. With reading down of Sec 377 seemingly being considered favourably by the judiciary, there will soon be a time when Gauri and other hijras will have their rights. Sunil Pant of the Blue Diamond Society, a queer rights organization in Nepal and the country’s first openly gay elected MP spoke of the new Nepali Constitution that is even now being written which includes committees working on same sex marriage rights and protection of LGBTI people. This he said was a fantastic way forward.
Post the meeting, a large contingent of LGBTQ community members and other human rights group members marched holding placards to Azad Maidan. They held hands and formed a long human chain with banners that demanded an end to violence against hijras and demanded equal rights. Humsafar Trust’s Kalyan unit came with almost 60-70 gay and transgender people and raised slogans vociferously. They also said they were proud to be gay and will fight injustice. Sakhi Char Chowgi’s workers and Lawyers Collective’s group shouted slogans against police violence.