CHENNAI: Two transgenders were appointed to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, one as a physiotherapist and another as a lab assistant in the Blood Bank, both on a contract basis.
S Selvi Santhosam (30), Physiotherapist and S Neaya Joseph (28), Microbiologist, are the first transgenders in the nation to be employed in a government institution and had to face much hardship, humiliation, discrimination before reaching this stage.
Speaking to Express, Selvi Santhosham, a native of Kallakurichi in Tirunalveli District said, “I joined Vel’s Paramedical College in Chennai and graduated in 2007. I had to undergo a lot of stress, pressure, and anxiety as I could not recognize myself and know who I am, since school days. Even my parents were not ready to accept me and were afraid to send me to study in college at Chennai. I secured a free seat in the college under government quota and always proved myself as a good student. A few good people recognized me for my work and provided me the opportunity. So I worked as a physiotherapist in the YMCA, Physical Education from 2008 to2009. Later when I underwent surgery in 2010, I practiced in the Madras Cricket Club,” she added.
“I even moved the High Court in 2013 to fight for a government job and failed. I met Health Minister Vijay Bhaskar recently asking for some job. He immediately checked with the Dean of the hospital and appointed me on a contract basis. Later Neaya also got appointed in the hospital.
Naeya Joseph, has an MSc in Microbiology, hails from Salem. She said that it is good to be accepted. “Sometimes it hurts to see people turn away after coming to know we are transgenders. We are also human beings like others. We are also educated and have a good family background, so why this discrimination?” Naeya added.
Selvi joined duty on November 12 and Naeya on November 22.