The poor people have been the most affected by lockdown and some good Samaritans have come forward to help them in some way or the other. Doing their bit to the society, the transgender community in the city, which is always relegated to the margins, came forward and did a lot of charity work.
The transgenders led by O Laila in Warangal city hosted lunch for eight days to slumdwellers. Now they are providing lunch for 70 select elderly people. They gave away groceries enough for one month to 170 households in the slums and cash of Rs. 500 each. The transgenders are shunned by the society and are forced to beg on trains, at bus stands and other public places. They lack public patronage except on rare occasions such as festivals and fairs. However, they showed their humane face during the ongoing crisis where thousands of people, mostly daily wage earners have been affected due to the lockdown imposed to prevent spread of dreaded coronavirus across the country.
The transgenders in Telangana, who have an association Telangana Hijra Transgender Samithi (THTS), exhausted all their money and are now looking up to the State government to come to their rescue.
Speaking to The Hindu , THTS general secretary O Laila said she personally sent Rs. 2,500 cash to 600 of her community members in various districts of Telangana, supporting them for at least one month during the crisis.
“There are about 48,000 transgenders in the State and nearly 600 members in erstwhile Warangal district. We have submitted a memorandum to the State government and MLC K Kavitha was supporting us. Some of our members got 12 kg rice and Rs. 1,500 cash. But not all members got it as many of us do not have ration cards. We are asking the government to extend the benefit to all members irrespective of ration cards,” she said.
According to her, the Bala Vikasa NGO has distributed grocery kits to 170 transgenders in Warangal city.
“We are the worst affected. We desperately need government support and request the government to extend all welfare schemes to us as well. Many of us live in rented houses which is a problem as we are unable to pay rents now. And due to the lockdown, we do not have any income now,” Laila said, adding that they welcome the State government’s decision to extend lockdown in the welfare of people.