Ill treatment in society: Third gender people

- BIMAL KHATIWADA, Chitwan
Ill treatment in society: Third gender people

Jan 10, 2015-When Anita Sapkota of Dhangadhi in Kailali migrated to Chitwan a month ago, she did not know that making a living was almost impossible. As a third gender, Anita is compelled to remain aloof from the family as well as the society.

Anita left home after her family members started to abuse her that she dishonoured the family. In a desperate search for means of sustenance, she started working in a hotel. However, she had to leave the job after customers started acting inappropriately. “I came here as my identity was compromised in my hometown. But it is hard even to get by now as my identity has become public here too,” Sapkota said.

However, after being acquainted to others like her, she said life has become relatively easier and that she has found a breathing space. Forced to leave school in the third grade after other students and even teachers started acting indifferently to her just because of her gender, Sapkota said she had to give up on her dream to be educated.

“Still very few of us open up about our nature due to pressure from family members and social stigma,” Sapkota said, during an interaction on third gender individuals held at a local radio station. “People mock us, calling us ‘Hinjada’ (third gender),” said Alisha Gurung of a local NGO working for third genders.

According to Gurung, finding a room was a tough task as people denied room to them after suspecting or learning that they are third gender people. Likewise, the participants at the programme also complained that even police, who are supposed to act responsibly, tease, use foul language and beat them up unnecessarily.

“We do not get employment opportunities and even though the law has made special provisions of women, there is no such provision addressing our problems, forcing many of us to opt for being sex workers just to earn a living,” said Anup Shrestha.

Published: 11-01-2015 09:31

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