Providing employment and empowerment to transgender community opens doors for Hijras
DHAKA, Sept 13, 2021 (BSS)- Transgender women community or Hijra has been a part of the country’s population but the community remains stigmatized and marginalised.
The plight of the Hijra community is not unknown to anyone. There have been efforts, though a little, to get them employed or self-employed. In recent times many of the transgender are trying to come out of the choices- to either beg on the roads, or to become sex workers.
One of such instances has been set up by Rani Chowdhury who is now on her path to become successful in life.
Rani is the first transgender who was selected as a listed dance artiste of Bangladesh Television (BTV). Not only dance artiste, she is also working in many famous organizations including ‘Bishwa Rang’. Rani is also working for the development of others transgender.
Rani applied for her inclusion as a listed dancer of BTV along with others last year. The concerned authority called Rani for audition. Accordingly, she attended the audition along with 300 others. The judges selected Rani being impressed by her dancing style and skill. After the selection, Rani introduced herself.
Jury Board member and BTV programme manger (dance) Imam Hossain said, “We could not ensure the identity of Rani. But later, Rani introduced herself and we all like it. Rani enhanced her quality not identity.”
He said all people have rights to live as human beings. “And the door of BTV is always open for them. But everyone should come under examination in every department. Rani will take part at regular and special programmes,” he added.
BTV controller (design) Mir Ahsan said Bangabandhu’s daughter Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina doesn’t want to leave any member of the society behind and the country moves ahead along with all people. A transgender was selected this year in normal process, he added.
Rani was born in 1990. Locals found a baby boy at a room of a hotel of Barishal and he was crying. The incident was published in newspapers at that time. Later, the authority of SOS Shishu Palli of Shayamoli in Dhaka recovered the boy and named him as Masud Rana. He was growing up with other children. His parents are :mother Aleya Begum and father Shahjahan.
Masud started his education at Harman Mainer School. But he felt different feelings when he was in class five. He liked to talk with girls and chose to wear dresses like a girl. Subsequently he began to feel the existence of a girl in himself though his physical condition likened to a boy. Later, he was finally transformed into a woman in 2018 and the name has been changed to Rani Chowdhury.
She started cultural practices from 1994 along with education. She had a dream to be a dancer from her childhood. Rani also completed four years course on dance from Bulbul Academy and her teacher was Farhana Chowdhury Baby.
Rani also took lessons from other international teachers also along with her education.
Rani said she would not concede defeat. “If you want to survive in the society, you have to realize your own rights. I have endured torture when people tried to hurt me and I have tried my best to do my job properly. The transgender are neglected in the society. But they have no fault. Yet they are out of society and out of family because of the identity. Everyone should realize their (transgender) sorrows”, she added.
Rani urged all concerned to create more employment opportunity for the transgender.