Living in Despair: How does it feel to be a transgender in Pakistan?

Living in Despair: How does it feel to be a transgender in Pakistan?

Let’s talk about a community no one in our country likes to talk about, ain’t that right?

Well, there are many to follow up with that apt description but here is an appalling situation the said community faces every other day in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan:

  • Public spaces are not ready to accommodate them, what about private spaces then? Let’s not go there
  • Looked down as degraded and unworthy to live.
  • Hospitals, Hotels, Malls, Restaurants, Theaters, Shopping Complexes are not ready to accommodate them.
  • High frequency of rape, physical and oral abuse.
  • Forced to leave Parental Home if identified.
  • Unwanted attention is given to their presence
  • Name Calling
  • They are often associated with child nabbing.

Yes, I am talking about the Pakistani transgender community, living under imminent threat and absolute despair as of today.

Trans-gender communities face a variety of social security issues even in this digital age.

Since most of the trans-genders either run away or are evicted from their homes, they do not get any sort of moral or social support from their biological family, a substantial percentage for sure.

Lack of employment opportunities and access to a peaceful and respectable life has to be earned the hard way, they aren’t privy to any entitled privileges like the majority of the Pakistani millennials.

The survey conducted by Punjab’s Social Welfare Department found a completely different status of residence: 45% were found living independently, 35% at deras and 19% with their families.

Consequently, most of these individuals have no other option, but to make their living by singing and dancing alongside the road or in private parties, we all know how are they treated there, right?


Here is what we witnessed in the recent past:



AIOU (Allama Iqbal Open University) has recently issued a policy statement where the university aims to provide free of cost education to trans-genders from Matriculation to Ph.D.

The launched program will considerably improve the living standards of the transgender community in Pakistan.

This program has been designed to improve the confidence of trans-gender and help them live with dignity as responsible citizens of society.

The initiative itself caters an opportunity to uplift the trans-gender community which can eventually amalgamate them into the mainstream.

Yes they have faced severe socio discrimination are still facing as of today but the community itself is persistent and hopeful, we shall dive in together to help them.

For a start:

  • We can address them in a respectable manner, both in public and private spaces.
  • Invite them to community events.
  • Encourage them to embrace academia, arts, music and various disciplines.

Let’s reaffirm our commitment to a much more tolerant Pakistan.

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Zunaira Michael

Zunaira Michael

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