Kalki -The life and times of an Indian transwoman

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Speaking at the seminar in Fatima college, Madurai
03.21.14 (8:18 am)   [edit]
I was the Guest of Honour at Fatima College's National Seminar 'A Glimpse on Multidimensional Aspects of Women's Rights'. Over 1500 students and this was a great opportunity for me to make them understand about transgender people and our issues and accept, support and treat us as equals. I should say it was a great opportunity for me to give them more light on gender equality.

At Fatima college, Madurai after the seminar

 
Campaigning at Corporates to accept transgender people as employees
12.25.13 (7:04 am)   [edit]
One of the campaigns I did in 2013 was sensitizing and persuading corporate companies and multinationals to accept and include transgender people as their employees. My campaigns at HP and Accenture at Chennai were both successful.

Accenture Chennai now has recruited two well qualified and educated transgender women as their employees.

I am very happy and proud to see the outcome of the campaign. There is still long way to go. Miles to travel before we achieve the equal status in society.

From Campaigning at Accenture to accept transgenders as employees
speaking to the employees at Accenture

From Campaigning at Accenture to accept transgenders as employees

From Campaigning at Accenture to accept transgenders as employees


 
How to deal with the supposed 'indecent' behaviour of a transgender person in public?
09.14.13 (5:36 pm)   [edit]
I wanted to open up this topic for quite some time. I finally decided to write it now. People keep complaining to me that many transwomen act indecently in public and threaten the public in trains/traffic signals and shop owners for money. That they go to the extend of cursing or raising their skirts/sarees to show their genitalia in case the money is not given. I'll tell you the best way to deal with this:

1. Respect transwomen as you'd respect any other individual. When you come across them, do not mock, laugh, tease, giggle or hush at them.

2. Do not fear. We are like you. We are no different. We are not abnormal, just that we are uncommon. We are born like you, from a mother, nourished and raised same like you. We are not different, so do not fear.

3. Do not show your weakness and vulnerability, that is when you become a victim.

4. Did they rip/pull out your money and threaten you with a curse when you ask back for your purse/belongings? Don't worry, in such criminal situations the curse won't work. A crime is still a crime whoever does it. Call/complain to the police if your belongings are not returned to you.

5. Do they raise their skirts/sarees if you aren't giving them the money or if you ask your belongings back? Call the police.

6. Mention a senior transgender person's name to the transwomen who entrap you. Chances are they may leave you.

But do remember that transgender people are an invisible/marginalised and oppressed community. Society has shamed us in many ways and continues to do so. We are fighting hard to live a life of dignity. We are fighting poverty, sexual exploitation, shaming, violence, rejection et all. When you hate/discriminate any individual, it comes back to you as hatred in the same way or the other.

The indecent behavior/actions of certain transgenders in public is definitely contemptible. But do remember that hundreds and thousands of transgenders have been shamed/beaten/ripped of their clothes/ molested/ raped and even murdered so far by the same society that points a finger at our 'indecent' behaviour. So do not discriminate us or anyone based on their gender identity/looks.

Times will change. We activists are doing our best to mainstream our community. Your acceptance, patience, understanding and love is important to us. It will take a few more years for us to be empowered. We not not wish this begging/ sexually exploited life.

The gen-next transpeople of our country should not be begging or doing sex work. I know that you'd wish the same. Our transgender people should be seen as leaders, civil servants, doctors, scientists, humanitarian workers, farmers, engineers, artists, entrepreneurs, teachers, professors, architects, politicians, artists, diplomats, air hostesses, pilots, police, army personnel etc.

Our people will sincerely contribute for the welfare and greatness of this nation. I Promise You. That dream to become a reality just needs one wish to be fulfilled in the society. Acceptance.

Dear friend, will you treat us as an equal and accept us as who we are?

 
Find Sowmya's story on Facebook. Share it to the world!!
09.02.13 (9:03 am)   [edit]


 
Must watch! 'Her name is Sowmya' - a film by Kalki Subramaniam
08.20.13 (12:29 pm)   [edit]
A beautiful Tamil transsexual girl. Her love, her life, her death. 'Her name is Sowmya' - An untold true story, a rare documentation, a bare bitter truth, a ten minute short simple amateur docu film by Kalki Subramaniam. A must see video film for all.

அவள் பெயர் செளம்யா (HER NAME IS SOWMYA) - In Tamil with English subtitles. A film by Indian Transgender rights activist Kalki Subramaniam, Produced by Sahodari Foundation. http://www.sahodari.org

Write to Kalki : aurokalki@gmail.com

 
Receiving the Penniyam award on Women's day 8th March 2013.
07.20.13 (11:17 am)   [edit]
Receiving the prestigious Penniyam award from Tamilnadu's popular Tamil newspaper Dinamalar on Women's day this year 2013.

They presented the award for my service to the transgender community. Thank you Dinamalar.



 
My visit to Rashtrapati Bhavan
07.20.13 (11:08 am)   [edit]
Rewind: September 2012. It was a proud moment for the transgender people of our country. For the first time, two transgender people, I and Akkai from Bangalore were invited by the Rashtrapati Bhavan to participate in the swearing in ceremony of Chief Justice of India Honourable Altamas Kabir. I represented all activists and people across the country relentlessly and silently working for our social, economical and political rights and recognition. It is not me. It is You I was representing. Jai Hind!


 
An unforgettable evening of pride and appreciation...
02.26.13 (7:09 pm)   [edit]
 I shall never forget this moment in 2011, this award that I got for my performance in the Tamil film 'Narthaki'. I got it from the veteran actor Charuhassan Sir who is one of the most respected senior actors in South Indian film industry. Charuhassan sir is the brother of Kamal Hassan and the Father in Law of Maniratnam.

Charuhassan sir spoke to me and greatly appreciated me. One of my unforgettable moments in life.. :)



 
Will you accept a Transgender to be an MLA? People of Chennai share their opinion.
01.06.13 (5:37 pm)   [edit]
In this short video taken by community journalist transwoman Kanchana, Chennai people share their opinion if they'd accept a transgender as an MLA for their constituency. This video is a part of the Out, Loud and Proud! project from Sahodari Foundation in which transwomen get trained as community journalists.



 
Endless Love - Sex, romance, desire and passion between a transwoman and a man
08.02.12 (10:33 pm)   [edit]
Men are attracted to transwomen as much as they are attracted to biological women. Transwomen are bold, raw and sexually stimulating. A transwoman can evoke the passion of a man like a volcanic eruption.

A man falls in love with a transwoman for many reasons. Not only is she beautiful and sensual but also a free person thrown away from the strange social norms of the society. Though she may live in rags, her spirit is free and she is prosperous and liberated in love. For a biological woman in India, her partner is chosen by her biological families. But a transwoman is free to choose her partner and may live with him even without a marriage bond. It is an unconditional bond of togetherness bound by love and passion.

A transwoman's love for a man is voluptuously complete. Some transwomen surrender totally to their men and the men become their masters. At times, a transwoman knows she is exploited, yet for her, he is the anchor in her life. She pours cascades of pure love on him which drives him madly to possess her completely. She believes in her own chastity and loyalty.

Transwomen are great playmates in bed. Men open up their deepest animal desires and gallop in flames of endless joy with them. Transwomen are explosive. Men are experimental. Together they burn and blow up playing with the Pandora of sexual desires. A man plunges deep into her and she swallows him up to the core.

A lonely midnight walk by her on a high street does magnetic effect on men. They buzz around her like hungry bees for their carnal satisfactions. She can choose the one who she desires. The remaining bees can fly home and cuddle with their loved ones.

The uncommonness about her identity is the mystery that men seek. Transwomen are magic and men want more of them. Transwomen are satiating divas, the undisputed queens of loveland.

 
First positive step after Guwahati University's workshop on transgender issues, law and policy
07.01.12 (7:47 pm)   [edit]
I am happy to share the decision of Guwahati University, Assam initiating steps to encourage admission and create better environment for marginalised students.

The telegraph, calcutta quotes "According to Rajkhowa, vice-chancellor Okhil Kumar Medhi, who participated in the workshop, discussed the plight of transgender students in educational institutions. “Setting up a counselling centre and legal aid clinic will help transgender students to know their rights. Normal students and faculty of the university can also be sensitised. We have asked the principals of all law colleges affiliated to Gauhati University to set up legal aid clinics at their institutions for the same purpose,” said The dean, faculty of law, Subhram Rajkhowa, who initiated the move.

I am very happy I presentation and advocacy results again in a positive change, this time in an education institution in North east state, Assam.



 
Making our voice heard - Voicing for the North eastern states transgender / hijra people at the National Seminar in Gauhati University, Assam
06.22.12 (5:01 pm)   [edit]

The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) and Department of Law, Gauhati University organized a National Workshop on transgender issues to discuss about law and policy pertaining to the transgender population.

I was invited to participate and present the issues and problems of the community at various levels - the social, educational, political and ecomomic situation of the Indian transgender population.

On the panel included U.Sarath Chandran, Member Secretary, National Legal Services Authority, Honourable Mr. Justice Amitava Roy, Judge, Gauhati High court (Executive chairman of Assam State Legal Services Authority), Honorable Dr. Justice A.H.Saikia, Chairman, Assam Human Rights Commission and Prof. O.K Medhi, Vice Chancellor, Gauhati University were some of the prominent people who came together for the noble cause.

In his address, U.Sarath Chandran said that the transgender people are so vulnerable. 'They can be easily caught to fill up the targeted number of police cases per month. They are easily vulnerable. Though being a citizen of this country, having all the rights, guaranteed by constitution of India, a transgender is excluded. Most of the legal difficulties are faced by transgenders only in India".

In his inaugural speech, Honourable Mr. Justice Amitava Roy said, "There is no law in India which recognizes their gender. India doesn't have a law to recognize. There is no bar as well. Therefore, they are left in the lurch. They are everywhere, yet they are nowhere. Even if there is no law, we have the constitution of India. What have we given to them? Justice? Liberty? Equality of status in opportunities? In the case of transgenders, focus and undivided attention is neccessary. The challenges are many. The most formidable is the inner challenge within ourselves to accept them".

Honorable Dr. Justice A.H.Saikia who is the Chairman of Assam Human Rights Commission in his statement said "You have gathered here for a right cause, at the right moment. I assure that we will start campaigning for the rights of transgender people".

I was one of the panelist in the afternoon session sharing the dias with Justice I.A.Ansari, Mr.A.F.A Bora, Member secretary, Assam State Legal Services Authority and Asstt.Prof. Dr.S.Deka of the department of Law, Gauhati University.

I gave a presentation on the issues and problems of the transgender/hijra communities in India which covered topics including family acceptance, discrimination transgender teens face in schools and colleges, the stigma in public places, the lack of livelihood opportunities, the issues of marriage and adoption, the problems in documentation, the huan rights violations of the polics, the lack of medical and healthcare services available to the transgender/hijra population and how the legal recognition is so important for the upliftment of our community. I shared my own story quoting my experiences as a transgender child in schools and the stigma I faced in college and the social exploitation which I have gone through so many times in my life, which happens even now to me without even my own knowledge.

The seminar hall was filled with students, media people, lawyers, professors and judges. I was the only transgender community representative there. I hope transpeople from the North east will soon have that liberty and freedom from stigma to be bold and courageous and voice for themselves. Until then, I am voicing for them.

NALSA (National Legal Services Authority) will soon file a petition in the supreme court for the legal recognition of the transgender people which will lead to revolutionary recommendations from the supreme court of India for the welfare of the supposed 'others' - the transgender / hijra / intersex people of India.

The only two places I visited in Gauhati were the Balaji temple where I met Tamil poojaris and the Umanandeshwar temple in the middle of the Bramaputra river. I came back to Chennai with much satisfaction because I had done my best to represent my community in the North east states of India.

 
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