Urging the third gender (Hijra) community to become more aware of their rights and self-esteem, Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor said all citizens should take the responsibility of raising awareness to ensure their basic rights with self-esteem.
He made the remarks after witnessing a mesmerizing performance of dance drama, ‘Nature’s Blessing’ by Sattaya held at the Bangladesh Mohila Somity Theatre in the city as chief guest, UNB reports.
“The responsibility of talking about the rights of the hijras is not just theirs. This is the moral responsibility of all of us. To ensure all basic rights including food, clothes, housing, education and medical, all of us have responsibilities,” the minister said.
“The present government has recognized the third gender (hijra). They will be able to vote in next parliamentary elections. They are not responsible for the physical defects, differences and diversity of the hijra people, provided by the Creator. They have no hand in it. We have to accept this diversity as normal. We have to be human, we have to pull them up,” he said.
Stressing on the strict implementation of law, he said “The implementation of the existing law is important. There are many laws in our country that we do not obey properly. We must respect our law. The mentality to comply with the law has to be created. Otherwise, creating new laws will not bring any benefit to society and the state.”
He ensured that if any organization working with the hijra community wants financial support for future cultural programs, the Ministry of Culture will provide necessary support. Apart from this, the representation of the Hijra will be ensured in the national level program at Shilpakala Academy.
Deputy Director of Democracy and Governance Office, USAID (Bangladesh) attended as special guest. Chairperson of Bandhu Anisul Islam Hero delivered the welcome remarks while Choreographer of Dance Drama Kabirul Islam Raton spoke about the drama and its purpose.
Bandhu Social Welfare Society works towards ensuring a dignified life for sexual minorities through protecting human rights, quality health including sexual and reproductive health, access to social security and justice, organised the event.
Bandhu with its core support created a dance group Sattya (Essence of the soul) in 2006 to pose, portray and project the voice, vulnerabilities and vital needs of the gender diverse population in terms of human rights and health care issues through their mesmerizing dance performance.