Anees Takkar

MARDAN: At a time of partial and complete lockdown in different parts of the country, most of the businesses have come to a halt and several cities are under Section 144 to avoid the spread of coronavirus.

All kinds of functions like weddings, music functions and entertainment gatherings have also been banned due to which transgender persons have also been deprived of their source of income. Most of transgender persons earn their livelihood by dancing at weddings and music functions, but ban on functions has confined them to their homes and they have no source of income now.

“We are living under very difficult circumstances and no one is taking care of our wellbeing. We have also spent the money which we had saved and now we have nothing to make ends meet,” said Enza Shah, a transgender person from Mardan.

She told TNN that she see many humanitarian organisations and government institutions helping different people by providing them food items and safety equipment, but transgender persons have been kept deprived.

According to the 6th population census in Pakistan in 2017, a total of 10,418 transgender persons are living in Pakistan, 913 of whom belong to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Al-Khidmat Foundation collects data of transgender persons

Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Sirajul Haq through a recent tweet directed the volunteers of Al-Khidmat Foundation to help transgender persons during coronavirus crisis. Ammad Akbar, a leading activist of Al-Khidmat Foundation, told TNN that the activists met representatives of transgender persons in Mardan and prepared a list of transgender persons along with their address to provide them assistance. He said all kinds of assistance will be provided to transgender persons in the hour of need.

Miss Mardan offers help to transgender persons

Famous transgender person ‘Miss Mardan’ has asked all the transgender persons of KP through a message that they can contact her for any need. She said people should help each other during difficult times.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has announced Rs3,000 financial assistance for labourers during the coronavirus lockdown. However, it is not clear whether the transgender persons will also get this relief or not.

Social activist Imran Takkar said while talking to TNN that transgender persons must also be included in this package.