PESHAWAR: The Provincial Alliance for Transgender and Intersex Community staged a day-long sit-in in Peshawar, demanding rights and protection for the community.
Two days after another transgender person was brutally murdered and her body mutilated, the members of the transgender community in Peshawar staged a sit-in and a rally demanding security. They claimed that incidents of violence against them and hate crimes by district police administration is increasing in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP).
The protesters chanted slogans loudly, clapping their hands. The protesters said that they will fight for their rights until the government delivers.
They also requested Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar to visit Peshawar and listen to their miseries and take stern action against police personnel who violate their fundamental rights, abuse power and act beyond their jurisdiction.
TransAction Alliance President Farzana Riaz said that Swat Police forces the transgender community to leave their homes. “Swat police forcing members of the transgender community to vacate the area is ‘illegal and unconstitutional’. The constitution guarantees that all citizens are free to move in and out of different areas of the country without any restriction,” she said.
Qamar Naseem, a transgender rights activist and member of the National Taskforce and KP Chief Minister’s Committee on Rights of Transgender Persons, said, “The human rights violations perpetrated against transgender persons in KP is the result of highly machismo, conservative and transphobic culture which ostracises and stigmatises transgender people, posing a serious threat to their health, security, life expectancy and employment prospects. This community is vulnerable without legal protections and is at a greater risk of violence, sexual and substance abuse. Most have little access to health services. Without recognition, many cases of violence and murder go undocumented.”
TransAction Alliance General Secretary Arzu Khan said, “We have been demanding our legitimate rights which are guaranteed by the constitution and legislation in Pakistan. Today, we are protesting peacefully but if the government fails to listen to the transgender community across KP, we will take this agitation to roads.”