Soni Khan

Soni Khan

Sunaina khan is graduate in Social Work & Human Psychology. She started her career as kathak dancer & performed in International & National dance festivals & recieved awards. She graduated in Pakistani folk & Classical dances under a project of UNESCO. She is working as trans activist from last 3 years & working for her community as active social worker.
Soni Khan

On 20th February 2017, there was an article published in Express Tribune on “Eligibility rules: Census should list ‘true transgender persons”. There were many misperceptions induced to the people by this article. So we find it necessary to clarify the difference between intersex & transgender on our platform.

Intersex” is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.

“Transgender” Denote or relating to a person whose sense of personal identity and gender does not correspond with their birth sex.

Many Trans activists approached us in this regard and gave us their statements. They said, “the public should know about these terms in details and shouldn’t mix them”.

While talking to the Self Projections, Jannat Ali who is a transgender activist and DIC Coordinator at KSS (Khawaja Sara Society) says, “We Condemn this kind of statements by Author. She needs to be sensitized. We did protest for our rights in Census of Pakistan and now these kinds of statements will affect our efforts. Media should also verify information by senior activists it’s one individual right to identify his or her or their Real Gender Identity.”

Inaya Zarakhel who is a transgender activist says, “This is Transphobia within the community. I wonder who are real Transgender and who are the fake ones. The article is very misleading and I think it’s time to give a red signal to these so called journalists.There are a lot of transphobic statements by Nadeem Kashish who is an activist”.
Sumair Ali Khan is a Transman from Pakistan, an enthusiastic UI/UX Freelance designer, currently associating with “Sub Rang Society”( that is working for the inclusive rights for Transgender community and sexual minorities) as a Program Manager says, “Shemale is a derogatory term primarily used in porn industry-sex work to describe a trans woman. The word is vile and I have never heard it used in anything but a negative context. First off I am a bit disappointed when the term is associating that has been used in the negative content to address trans community especially when it is being used by the Trans Activist. It is not at all a rocket science even on individual or community levels we can earn respect by others unless we can’t learn to give respect to ourselves. The article By Sehrish Wasif which was published on February 19, 2017, Eligibility rules: Census should list ‘true transgender persons’, I think this is a profoundly unfavorable and unsafe article. This opinion shouldn’t be integrated. Although being an activist we all raise our voice to bring issues to the light of the issues concerning transgender individuals in Pakistan and develop a supportive, enduring and non-judgmental condition for them”.

He further added, “We would like to accomplish the acknowledgment of transgender individuals as equivalent individuals from Pakistani society. Unfortunately after reading such article and the statement delivered by the trans activist like Nadeem Kashish even within the community the proper definition of the term Transgender should be educated that there is a whole spectrum of possible gender identities. We use the term transgender as an adjective and a qualifier to describe people who do not identify with conventional male and female gender roles. This adjective is an umbrella term which covers a wide range of possible identities including, but not limited to, inter-sexual, transsexual, hijra, Khwaja sira, cross-dressers, and transvestites and these sort of activism that is based on personal beneficial or lack of self-awareness should be condemned”.

WHAT I THINK AND UNDERSTAND:

  • By the definition it’s proven that the term intersex has a direct correlation with birth, however, the discriminated term transgender include only those people who by choice and willingly undergo sex change operation or by hormones replacement therapy. In the world, the percentage of intersex people are roughly one in thousands as compared to transgender people.
  • in 20l0, Supreme court of Pakistan declared it legal to undergo sex change operation(taken authentic reference from Wikipedia)https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_rights_in_Pakistan
  • since transgenders are those who go under sex change surgery or HRT(hormone replacement therapy), it is invalid to claim that those people who have undergone such procedures shouldn’t be included in the census
  • the point raised that those people who are men having wives and children and have cynics of transgenders are fake since trans people cannot have children, and they would not be able to transfer property rights to their children is valid though.

Conclusion

By the way, yes, people confuse intersex with transgender. But society has also always known that not all transgender people are intersex. This is an open secret. Traditionally Trans community did not publicly talk about who is intersex & who is transgender. But everybody knows that these two types have always existed and are all part of the community. They are all “true transgender”. And educated people in mainstream society also know about this. Being Trans is not defined by your body.

These views strictly belong to the writer.Self Projections is not responsible for views represented by her.
 Originally discussed article linked here.

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