Thursday, 23 March, 2023

Gangs active in garb of hermaphrodites

Gangs active in garb of hermaphrodites

Gangs are committing various crimes, including mugging, extortion and kidnapping, in the capital under the guise of hermaphrodites, tarnishing the image of the third gender community.

According to a senior DMP officer, around 90 percent of the capital’s transgender members are fake. They live with their families and have normal sexual orientations while many are eunuchs.

However, they dress up as transgender persons for extorting money from houses and people on the streets.

The third gender community had submitted written complaints to the Police Headquarters several times to stop crimes being committed by gangs posing as hermaphrodites, but to no avail.

Even, a parliamentary watchdog had recommended medical tests to identify true third gender people and providing them with identity cards to prevent such crimes. But steps are yet to be taken in this regard.

When contacted, Assistant Inspector General (Media and Public Relations) of the Police Headquarters Manzur Rahman told the Daily Sun that they are conducting drives to bring the fake transgender people to book.

Bangladesh Hijra Kalyan Foundation submitted two applications to the Police Headquarters in 2015 and 2017 respectively, mentioning that some youths in the guise of third gender people were involved in various crimes, including mugging, hijacking and extorting money from business entities and residential houses.

In the complaints, the foundation sought police’s intervention to stop the crimes.

Abida Sultana, president of the foundation, told the Daily Sun that the crimes in the name of third gender have not yet been controlled.

She said, “About 30-35 percent of the transgender are not actually third gender members. They’re normal human beings. They’re tarnishing the image of the third gender community by getting involved in crimes.”

About the number of hermaphrodites in the country, Abida said as per the government’s estimate, there are over 12,000 real members in the country, but the exact number is far away from the census.

She said they provided cards to 50,000 third gender members across the country while many have not yet received the cards.

About extorting money from houses, business entities, roads and buses, the Bangladesh Hijra Kalyan Foundation president termed it completely illegal.

 “Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has given us the status of third gender. Why will we harass people by begging them for money or extorting money from them? We have the ability to work. Law enforcers should bring those who are involved in the crimes to book,” she said.

Last year, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Social Welfare Ministry recommended medical tests to identify true third gender people and providing them with ID cards to prevent crimes in the garb of hermaphrodites.

Asked about the issue, Atiqur Rahman, administrative officer (social safety) of the Ministry of Social Welfare, told the Daily Sun that the National Human Rights Commission urged the ministry not to for the tests. “So, we’re yet to take any decision on the recommendation of the parliamentary watchdog,” he said.

After the arrest six fake transgender members from the city’s Jatrabari area on February 17, Ashraf Hossain, deputy commissioner of Detective Branch (Wari Division) under Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP), said about 90 percent of the capital’s hermaphrodites are fake. In the guise of Kajol alias Hijra Sajani, Mohammad Sohag, who is the father of several children, was leading the gang. And the rest arrestees have wives and children, said the DC.

They had been arrested after a college student filed a kidnapping case against them.

Abdul Khaleq, son of late Kamal Mia of Jajhor at Bason in Gazipur city, had been involved in different crimes, including supply of young girls for sex trade, posing as a transgendered person.

On February 19, a criminal stabbed him to death in front of KS Super Market at Chandana of the city.

Officer-in-charge (OC) of Bason Police Station Sanwar Jahan told the Daily Sun that they arrested the killer of Khaleq.

He said Khaleq was not a transgendered person. “Rather, he had wife and two children. He was completely a normal man, but he used to extort money from people and supply young girls for sex trade in the guise of third gender.”

He was murdered due to enmity over the girl supply, the OC said.