Social stigma follows transgenders even in toilets

Apart from unavailability of washrooms, this gender-neutral community is facing discrimination everywhere.

Published: 04th July 2016 05:24 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th July 2016 09:34 AM   |  A+A-

HYDERABAD: In the din of Swachh Bharat publicity, a cry of distress is getting drowned.  At a time when the entire nation is witnessing a high-profile campaign over the need for construction of toilets in every nook and cranny, transgenders, a stigmatised class of our society, are silently bearing the pain of lack of separate restrooms for them.

There are around one lakh transgender persons in  Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Apart from unavailability of washrooms, this gender-neutral community is facing discrimination everywhere.

For instance, a transwoman, Lakshmi, tried to relieve herself in the restroom at a shopping mall in the posh Banjara Hills area of the city the other day. But the person could not find the restroom that caters to her gender. She had to suppress her urge of going to the loo till she reached home at far-off Uppal.

“Finding suitable bathrooms at shopping malls, film theatres or bus and railway stations is a difficult task for transgender persons in the two Telugu states. If transgendered men (after changing sex to male) go to men’s restrooms, men try to molest them. Similarly, when transwomen go to women’s washrooms, they will face an altogether different situation,” Vyjayanthi Vasanta Mogli, a transwoman and a PhD scholar at Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) here, told Express.

According Vyjayanthi, who has been actively participating in movements to exert pressure on the governments for formulating certain laws to protect the rights of transgenders, intersex persons might even face violence when using restrooms, exclusively allocated for men or women.

Some of the transgender persons told Express that because of lack of restrooms for them, they do not drink much water while venturing out of their homes, just to avert the need to go to  toilet.

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