NALSA to the rescue of transgenders

Published: December 12, 2011

They do not exist for many organisations. Even for several government departments they are non-existent. But, due to the efforts of the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) people of the third sex are also being given a place in society.

For the first time the options male, female, and transgender are given in the application form for the Aadhaar UID card. Ratnakumar, who represents the Centre for Advocacy and Research, said several transgenders in the city have applied for the card and are waiting to be issued one. For many the Aadhaar UID card will be the first identity card they will be getting.

In the real world the transgenders refer to themselves as TGs. They are accepted only by the MSMs and FSWs, groups that are also ostracised by the rest of society. These abbreviations are like code words that protect them from the ‘intolerant’ public that has doomed them to extremely retched and secretive lives. Unlike in the developed countries these groups have neither the sympathy nor the understanding of the general public. They are spurned not just by society, but even their own families here.

There are 1,997 transgenders – TGs – and ‘men who have sex with men’ – MSMs – in Krishna district and they have all formed an association called the Krishna Yuvajana Samkshema Sangham.

The female sex workers (FSWs) too have an association called Krishna Vennela. HIV, a common enemy of the TGs, MSMs, and FSWs, keeps them together. They all fall into the high risk category and have to keep a close tab on their health, regularly undergoing various kinds of tests to be sure that they have not been infected by the highly debilitating disease.

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