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K H U WA J A S I R A S / E U N U C H S / H I J R A S /

TRANSGENDER / TRANSSEXUAL PEOPLE AND THEIR


ISSUES:
Eunuchs are of 3 types: Hermaphrodites Khonsa Mushkil (in
whom it cannot be biologically determined whether they are
male / female). These are very rare in Pakistan (everyone I
spoke to, from government officials to eunuchs representatives
themselves, says they do not even make 1% of their total
Pakistani population). They are biological / original / naturalborn eunuchs who have either both male/female functional
genital organs or have only one of each. Also called Nirban. It
is generally accepted that they are kept indoors by family and
not allowed to go outside.
Psychological Eunuchs (and frankly this is a a misnomer term
simply because the debate on what determines maleness and
femaleness is a long/broad one - biology vs. psychology debate
and we shouldnt get into it). These are either complete fullyformed-genitals men who can have kids (Khuwaja Sira Mard type 1). They have femaleness i.e. they want to sit with men,
act like girls, do the chores girls like to do.
Khuwaja Sira Mard is defined as the one who is a complete man
but are feminised males zenanas or zankas and the 2nd type
is the one with ill-formed organ one testicle kind that cannot
have kids (they usually prefers to remove the incomplete male
organs). In Islamic Fiqah (some 1200 years ago) they were
defined as people who had male area for urination. These are
the ones who end up with gurus who then get them castrated

since the only use gurus have for their own kind is through
money (sex workers, begging) - investment is made in the
chayla - and then they get hormonal injections (they start
losing hair on their body, silicone implants) and get turned into
the call girl role, enacting their social role. This is conversion
of transgender to transsexual being to Khuwaja Sira Aurat (also
called Hijras).
Khuwaja Sira Aurat were defined in Islamic Fiqah as people
who use or have developed female area for urination. Some
even define them as those who dont have menses, breasts not
fully developed and have a bone in the urine area. Everyone I
spoke to said that most of the people in Pakistan were KSAurat
(the operated ones) and some were KSMard.
There is division in the Khuwaja Sira community and
representatives as to which is more natural or who to include in
Khuwaja Sira header itself (Mard/Aurat). For e.g. some groups
believe that men who can have children have no right to be
included in Khuwaja Sira whereas other groups believe that men
who get operated upon to turn themselves into women are fake
Khuwaja Siras. There is even division on whether KSM who can
have kids are gays or not - for e.g. one KSM guy I spoke to said
that gays are different from us since they dont like to dress up /
make up as women as much as we do (!)
The term transgender is used to include many different types of
people and is confusing hence you should confine yourself only
with using actual KSM/KSA/Mushkil wording.

SUPREME COURT:
After Dr. Aslam Khaki filed Constitutional Petition no. 43 of
2009, for rights of transgender as in right to dignity, to
inheritance, right to live with their parents, for the welfare of
abandoned community, in 2009 SC declared transgender as
citizens of Pakistan and directed SWD to register and protect
their basic human rights. CJ said eunuchs are also citizens of
Pakistan and should be given basic fundamental rights
guaranteed in the constitution.
After the original ruling all that has happened till 2012 is more
hearings to see whether the original ruling was complied with
(called Compliance Reports). Way back in 2009, CJ/SC had
declared that eunuchs were entitled to shares from inherited
property - its not a new judgment - its simply that CJ is given
progress reports and he then makes orders on the basis of those
reports.
Social Welfare Department (in 2009 the authority lay with
federal level; now there are provincial SWDs and ICT SWD
comes under Gondals Capital Administration Ministry). They
were asked to not only register KSM/KSA community as a
census to determine their total population but also to provide
facilities for them for education (technical/ vocational) and to
get medical certificates on the basis of which their right to
property could be ascertained - by writing to DCOs. SWDPunjab said no it had never been given such a directive to do
medical tests.

NADRA (was authorized to issue cards to them as KSM/KSA on


the basis of medical tests)
ECP (to register them as voters)
Police (provide security to KS against people who take benefit
of their sexual weakness; FIR can be registered directly with
SC registrar)
Health Secretaries/ Departments ( to provide free health care to
them; free medical for HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and hepatitis)
Basically to help them on priority basis and help them like
Senior Citizens.
Education Secretaries/ Departments (To provide facilities to KS
interested in getting education primary/ middle/ matric)
EFFECTS:
RELIGION/ INCOME/ POPULATION:
According to Action Aid report (2010), no exact data available
on them. Khaki says they are 80,000; Almas Bobby says they
are 500,000. The report also includes reluctance and noncooperation of gurus to get KS registered as they were not sure
of the purpose or impact of the registration. According to this
report, 275 had registered in Lahore, 250 in Rawalpindi and
3500 in Karachi by respective SWDs.
In stats provided by SWD NWFP (KP) in SC in 2009, generallyspeaking, 98% KS are Muslim; some are Christian.
Many have a monthly income of less than Rs.6000. About 2%
live below / around poverty line (Rs.2000/month); However,
everyone I spoke to (from KS community, their reps as well as

government officials) all said that their monthly income can


range on an average Rs.30K to 35K with prettier ones getting
more (usually a sexjob / taxi-sexcapade can cost Rs.100-300)
and theres begging as well. Chaylas have to give bhataa/
commission to their gurus as well. The one with more facebeauty is paid more.
In a submission made to SC by SWD NWFP (KP) in 2009, 324
transgender; SWD-Rawalpindi says that all over Punjab the
registered number is 2500 - and all work in this matter was done
in 2009, not after; In Balochistan, 56 (according to their
submission in SC in 2009);
According to data provided by NADRA to us, the following
provinces have been registered as Male Eunuchs/Female
Eunuchs/Khonsa-e-Mushkil and the number of voters in each
province:
KP Male Eunuch 47; Female Eunuch 19; Khons-e-Mushkil 25;
Total 91; Voters 62
FATA Male Eunuch 11; Female Eunuch 6; Khons-e-Mushkil 14;
Total 31; Voters 21
PUNJAB Male Eunuch 405; Female Eunuch 244; Khons-eMushkil 27; Total 676; Voters 480
SINDH Male Eunuch 84; Female Eunuch 44; Khons-e-Mushkil
25; Total 153; Voters 98

BALOCHISTAN Male Eunuch 17; Female Eunuch 21; Khonse-Mushkil 12; Total 50; Voters 37
G-B Male Eunuch 2; Female Eunuch 1; Khons-e-Mushkil ___
Total 3; Voters ____
AZAD KASHMIR Male Eunuch 2; Female Eunuch ___; Khonse-Mushkil 2 Total 4; Voters ___
TOTAL Male Eunuch 568; Female Eunuch 335; Khons-eMushkil 105 Total 1008; Voters 698
MUSHROOMING OF KHUWAJA SIRA NGOs:
This is a fact acknowledged by everyone - that before 2009 no
social welfare department had heard of KS NGOs and it was
only after the SC ruling that they sprouted out - the general trend
is that gurus in various cities have formed their own grand or
regional or local alliances and want to have a stake / maintain
hegemony through NGOs on their chaylas or KSM/KSAs. SWD
Islamabad (who used to have data on all Pakistan NGOs before
18th Amendment) has to give the statistics but Director Fayyaz
Bhatti said that just like before Zia-ul-Haqs Zain daughter, there
were no special education departments etc. and everything was
built overnight, similarly, before SC 2009 ruling he hadnt heard
of a KS NGO. But the Baseline Survey (June 2012) was
impossible without the help of local KS - the original
anthropologists were beaten up by Bari Imam eunuchs thinking
they were there to get them evicted etc.) and SWD-Islamabad
had to take help of local eunuchs (Kashish, Express News

makeup artist) and a sample questionnaire response of 300 was


taken. He and others are of the view that whatever has to be
done, has to be done through KS only - nothing related to KS
can be done by normal officials in normal posts - one has to go
to even the chaylas through the guru - and thats how it will
work. They have secret answers (their language farsi),
otherwise you cant enter, they even said at first to
anthropologists to pay them first, why should we waste our
time on survey?.
Some are registered now; some are non-registered (Almas
Bobby is alleged to have a non-registered NGO but she says she
has been fighting for rights of KS since 1993; and that Khaki
sidelines her and supported her rivals).
PROPERTY RIGHTS:
In Fiqah it is given that KSM will get property share as a man
(2). KSA will get what a woman would (1.5). On Khunsa
Mushkil, Fiqah was quiet but a ruling can be made to include
them as inheritors of property as relatives (.5 or .2). Things are
developed only through use and it is only when law and Fiqah is
used in Pakistan that this people will get their due share. Social
Welfare Department (Punjab) actually did contact such peoples
families and get them small (1 canal or less agricultural land) in
Jhelum, Naorwal, Sahiwal but one Khuwaja Sira in pindi
refused to get any property from his family. (There are usually
many reasons for KSM/KSA not disclosing their parentage / not
wanting to get in touch with their family - it could be that they
ran away from home at a young age - usually however it has

more to do with KSM/KSA sympathizing with their families,


even monetarily contributing back to them).
SC has also made it criminally liable of parents who throw their
kids out and gurus for exploiting them. It only needs to be
implemented and understood by KS community (who all have
gurus and deep mistrust of people in general after years of
exploitation and survival-play)
EVIDENCE:
Fiqah is quiet on the matter. But logically/legally a man will be
witness as a man, and declared KSA as a woman. For Khasna
Mushkil, Qayas will have to be done.
MEDICAL TEST:
SC never told SWD to do the tests - it simply asked NADRA to
register or make ID cards for KSM/KSA on basis of medical
tests (so as to determine who is KSA and KSM), NADRA said
that it will have to make new software to even make these
categories in the system and that took time. Then NADRA said
it didnt have infrastructure to do medical tests to determine the
category either and it will take time. (The other reason why there
was delay in issuing CNIC to KS was the fact that some who
came to get new cards already had CNICs as men or women and
anyone who has been issued an ID card cannot be re-issued!
This was something that KS didnt like (calling it discriminatory
If they want us to be medically examined, then every man and
woman applying for CNIC should be checked as well - Sarah

Gill, GIA) and created a ruckus as if NADRA was delaying


deliberately). A KS NGO Gender Interactive alliance (GIA) and
NADRA were at loggerheads on this issue (Almas Bobby says it
was she who suggested it to CJ; others will disagree that it was
she who suggested it; but all KS NGOs will agree that they dont
want KS to get medical tests) Anyways KS in court said that it is
obvious we are different and there is no need for tests when a
person says he/she is KSA/KSM. SC agreed.
Khaki sb. believes that was wrong since a special right is created
by SCs ruling (Almas Bobby believes it was right - she defines
herself as this: For burial and for Umrah/Haj I am a man but for
everything else I am a woman). For e.g. by SC ruling KS are
supposed to come into mainstream, they are now asking for
special quota in electoral seats - how will a person know that a
man claiming to be KSM standing from their seat is really KSM
or rather not a fake cross-dresser who simply wants elected?
KS NGOS have not developed an understanding of concepts of
what it means to come under the fold of law. For e.g. medical
is already free in government hospitals so no special right was
created by SC when it declared / advised that free service be
provided - medicines have to paid for by all. But special right
was created for HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and tuberculosis.
Abdul Quddus, Director SWD-Punjab said that KS themselves
suggested 6 months back that imposters (men who had
professionally adopted dance etc. and had kids and were not
real) were getting financial help from SWD so medical tests

should be done to check KS. No decision on these tests has been


taken as yet.
Action Aid Report (2010) stated that Punjab government
decided to conduct medical tests of registered transvestites
when reports came that imposters were getting themselves
registered to get financial benefits reserved for transvestites.
SWD-Rawalpindi District Officer Shafique says that neither did
SC tell SWD to conduct medical tests nor will KS come to give
them - thats a reality. None of them is real KS, they are all
self-made, there are men who have kids.
Way back in 2001, there was objection raised by Vision Pakistan
NGO and then a LHC petition that forced testing of KSM/A
should be stopped (the petition was filed against National AIDS
Control Program, World Bank and 2 foreign agencies).
VOTING RIGHTS:
According to Khurhseed Alam sb., ECP Director PR and
Archive, anyone over the age of 18 can get registered as a voter.
There are 700 KS registered voters all over Pakistan - As to how
they will be accommodated in polling stations, Alam says there
are 65,000 polling stations in Pakistan and 700 registered voters.
Right now, they go to the booth according to the category man
or woman that is written on their CNIC, a separate counter can
also be made for them; one polling station in a town/city will be
declared as the place where KS can go and vote - but since they

are only 700, there is no need to make special arrangements for


them, and it is unlikely that any problem will be created by their
presence but it can be managed within the current system.
As for standing in elections, anyone who is registered as a voter
can stand for elections. Almas Bobby said that in 1997 she tried
to stand opposite Kh. Tanveer in local election but her papers
were rejected - Alam, ECP says that at that time district and
session judges used to check documents and it is only on legal/
technical grounds that a paper is rejected - not on personal likes/
dislikes and the person could go to court and challenge the
rejection.
NADRA:
Awaiting data on KS from them. Sajid, mediaperson at NADRA
said that problem occurred only when we found out that 80% of
the applicants already had ID cards (even CNIC cards), one
person cannot be alloted two cards and then there were people
claiming to be KS who had children registered as well so there
was problem in re-grouping infrastructure. But they can get any
cards made as whatever category they want to get themselves
inducted in.
But according to Alam, ECP, under SC ruling, there are 5
categories of KS who can get CNIC: 1) those whose
appearance is male, and he goes to NADRA and says he is
male, he will be given CNIC of a man; 2) whose appearance is
female and he goes to NADRA and says he is a woman, he will

be issued woman CNIC; Then there are KSM, KSA and


Khasna Mushkil. The KS community can get themselves
registered as any of the 5 above on the basis of what they say.
There is also the problem of wrong/fake lineage / fathers name.
NADRA can only issue CNIC for those applicants with known
biological parents.
According to data provided by NADRA to us, the following
provinces have been registered as Male Eunuchs/Female
Eunuchs/Khonsa-e-Mushkil and the number of voters in each
province (already given above in detail): KP Total 91; FATA
Total 31; PUNJAB Total 676; SINDH Total 153;
BALOCHISTAN Total 50; G-B Total 3; AZAD KASHMIR
Total 4; GRAND TOTAL: 1008
EMPLOYMENT/ EDUCATION:
KS say that disabled have 1% or 2% quota why cant we be
given the same? After SC order, SWD Sindh made it a point to
hire KS as loan recovery officers and as malaria control
programme / tuberculosis programme (by SWD-Karachi- and
Health Departments in Hyderabad/Sukkur - it was declared a
success); Small Industries Department in SWD-Punjab wants to
hire them as loan recovery officers; KS were hired as polio
vaccinators (that move was also declared a success); UNFPA
supported projects by SWD-Sindh on HIV/AIDS and MSM/A
were hired as outreach workers and peer educators in Karachi
and Larkana; but these were all temporary jobs; NADRA said it
will reserve 6 seats for KS.

SWD-Punjab is starting an educational/vocational training


centre (skill learning) project in both Lahore and Rawalpindi. In
Rawalpindi, it will start at Rizwan-Bubbly gurus place - the
chaylas wanted courses like beauty parlor and stitching. The
guru will be given Rs.5000/month/student (as incentive to allow
the chayla to do the course) and the student will be paid Rs.500/
month to do the course.
When the same SWD-Rwp. approached Almas Bobby at her
house, she got all her chaylas around and asked them whether
they wanted to study - all said no- so Almas said what can I do?
(when I spoke to her she said whatever money they will get,
they will spend on clothes and make-up, they dont have it in
them to do anything else). There are 5 big gurus in just
Rawalpindi - 4 are against Almas Bobby (Rizwan-Bubbly,
Reema, Meera, Saleem Iqbal-Shazia) - all of them have their
own KS NGOs - Meera has Tehrik-i-Tahaffauz-e-KS; Shazia
has Moorat Foundation; Bubbly has KS Foundation and
Bobby has Shemale Association of Pakistan. Its a turf war for
money, prettier chaylas. Shazias people fought with Almas
Bobbys people in Arts Council gathering on KS rights (!)
LOANS/ FINANCIAL HELP:
SWD-Punjab Director Quddus says that SWD gives outright
money to the most vulnerable people (who dont have anything
to eat) Rs.10,000; An NGO Akhuwat gives them Rs.
25,000-50,000 loan so that they can start a job; They are called
to Fountain House for free testing of HIV/AIDS.

ZAKAT/USHR:
There is no restriction on giving aid to them, however the
Chariman Zakat/Ushr Committee Rawalpindi, Syed Izhar
Bukhari, I spoke to said no one had ever come to collect it. After
SC ruling, financial assistance packages ranging from 5,000 to
10,000 were provided from BaitulMaal - but no one availed of
the service (KS NGOs say no one provided them the benefit).
Nor from Benazir Income Support Programme.
Maulana Siddiq (Bari Imam Muslim Town Maulvi) said that KS
should pay the chanda for mosque rather than a portion of
mosque chanda be paid to them.
LAW:
PPC Sect. 377 deals with unnatural offences: Whoever
voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature
with any man, woman or animal shall be punished with
imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment of either
description for a term which shall not be less than two years nor
more than ten years and shall also be liable to a fine.
Eunuchs (Khawaja Saras) Welfare and Rights Bill, 2012 was
made by SWD-Islamabad on directives of CAD since SWDIslamabad said that they didnt know how many in Islamabad
had CNIC or had property - this draft has been sent to CAD
Ministry - from where it will go to Law Ministry - who will send
it to all stakeholders like Finance, Human Rights, interior,
Religious Affairs, Islamic Ideology Council etc. and then sent to

cabinet - who will again send it back to Law Ministry which


after re-drafting it in legal language will send the draft to
Parliaments Standing Committee on CAD - after approval from
that Committee, the draft will be on the floors on NA.
Even for a meeting that was set-up by SWD-Islamabad to
discuss the Draft Bill in which 15 eunuchs came Almas Bobby
sent one of her chaylas and didnt come herself.
The SWD-Islamabad people believe that it is only when the
commission will be made that things will get streamlined - right
now everything is helter skelter and it will take time to bring KS
community into society. Legislation needs to be done, boards
will be created and then 2-3 departments will run the affairs of
KS.
There is an issue of mehram as well (which will be determined
by Religious Affairs Ministry and IIC).