According to the 2009 Supreme Court of Pakistan decision that the transgenders are normal citizen of Pakistan and they have right to get their national identity card. Thus decision includes their equality in everything; such as, their right in inheritance after death of parents, job opportunities, opportunity to education etc. However, the decision is only confined in papers not in practice.
It may be due to a myth which evolved in our society since decades that they cannot do anything. They can be only singer, dancer or prostitute. But in reality the picture is different.
In fact, most of the transgenders never get a chance to acquire education in the regular schools due to discriminatory treatment. They have no job opportunities, health and financial security in our society. Hence, they are forced to make their lives as a prostitute, singer or dancer. Additionally, transgenders are also not usually encouraged to live in our neighborhood (mohalla). They are compelled to establish their colonies outside of regular communities. It means, these people are not still accepted by our society as a human being.
Nonetheless, Punjab has the most transgender population and second is Sindh, according to the 6th census of country. But there is no any welfare programme for them at government level in these provinces. First time, the KP government has extended Sehat insurance programme to transgenders. Secondly, the BISP has also taken the initiative recently to introduce transgender as a beneficiary in the programme.
In nutshell, transgenders have also the right to ambitions. There should be quota for their jobs in private and government sector. The government also needs to pay a heed about their rights, seriously. They can live a respectful and prosperous life if we all cooperate and encourage them by considering them equal to us.
WAJID ALI BROHI,
Hyderabad, May 4.