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Dhaka Tribune

Sylhet police hands over 8 food vans to 24 transgenders

They have been provided with the necessary equipment along with the food vans

Update : 20 Nov 2018, 09:53 PM

Sylhet Metropolitan Police (SMP) has presented eight food vans to 24 transgender people as part of a move to welcome the often persecuted hijra community into mainstream society. 

Following the handover ceremony at Sylhet District Sport Association auditorium on Monday evening, teams of three people will be able to sell a variety of food items including “chotpoti” and “fuchka” from the vans.

They have been provided with the necessary equipment along with the food vans.

“Providing the hijra with specialized vans is a small step to make them a part of  society,” said SMP Deputy Commissioner (Administration) Jabedur Rahman, who had fundraised some of the money to buy the vans and presided over the ceremony.

“There are many people who are condescending towards the transgender community and view them as inferior human beings. As a result, the isolated hijra community leads a different life from the mainstream society and fall prey to various crimes.”

Speakers at the program said everyone has a role to play to bring the transgender community into the mainstream through cooperation – and not neglect.

“The hijra community is neglected, and disturbed in all spheres of life for being different (and) that is why they are involved in various crimes to make a living,” community member Rikta Shikdar said.

“We are happy to get (these) opportunities and will try to take this initiative as a model for self-reliance.”

During the ceremony, speakers commended the initiative taken by Jabedur Rahman. 

Deputy Commissioner Faisal Mahmud was chief guest at the ceremony, while the special guests were Principal of Sylhet Government Women's College Prof Hayatul Islam Akinji, and Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) executive member and Sylhet District Football Association (DFA) President Mahi Uddin Ahmed Saleem.

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