Transwomen hit the ground running in TN urban local body polls

She appeals to voters with her identity as a strength. “We have no family and hence we will engage ourselves completely in public service.

Published: 03rd February 2022 05:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd February 2022 02:40 PM   |  A+A-

Rajamma

Rajamma

Express News Service

CHENNAI: “So far, you have given opportunities to men and women. Please give transpersons too a chance,” says 32-year-old N Jayadevi, who is contesting as the AIADMK candidate in Ward No 112 (Kodambakkam area). She is the only transperson fielded by the opposition party in Chennai corporation so far.

She appeals to voters with her identity as a strength. “We have no family and hence we will engage ourselves completely in public service. Don’t think that I am from an opposition party. I will fight for your rights and do my best for the people.”

Though transpersons have contested in elections in the State earlier, their representation in politics still remains very low. Jayadevi is one of the few who are actively involved in politics. Jayadevi, who studied up to Class 12, recalls that her parents were staunch supporters of the AIADMK and she was christened by Jayalalithaa as Jayadevi.

“I joined the AIADMK in 2008 and from 2012, I have been working as an office-bearer. In 2014, Amma (Jayalalithaa) appointed me as the commissioner for holding party’s internal elections in rural areas in Chengam in the Tiruvannamalai district.”

She is now serving as the deputy secretary of the women’s wing of the party’s South Chennai northeast district unit. She said she had served as a member of the welfare board for transpersons during the previous AIADMK regime and was involved in addressing public issues.

Rajamma alias Rathi, an office-bearer of the BJP’s art and culture wing, is so far the only transperson fielded by BJP in Chennai. She is contesting in ward No 76. Rajamma is full of confidence since she has been engaged in public service for a long time and says she knew people’s day-to-day problems well.

“Representatives of the DMK and AIADMK elected from this ward have failed to fulfil the needs of the people in the past. So, I am promising the people that I would work for them genuinely,” Rajamma told TNIE.



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