Initially, I used to talk, walk, dress-up and do makeup like girls do. When I went to school, boys used to tease me, beat me and call me a chhakka (a third gender person/eunuch). They used to drag me to the washroom and make me touch their private parts, and I used to run away and complain about them to our teachers. Instead of helping, they used to hold me responsible for it, blaming me for behaving like a girl. I spoke to my mother about everything that was going on with me. Till I was about fifteen, she used to think I’m a boy. I also didn’t have much idea about all of it at that time, but when I observed other kinnars at trains while traveling somewhere, I always had a doubt, if I was like them. So I told my mother that I must be a kinnar (eunuch). My parents kept asking me, not to behave like girls. I was the eldest son for them. They used to say that I was bringing a bad name to them. But what could have I done? I am a kinnar, and Allah has made me like this. I told them whatever I felt I was, but nobody was able to understand it. One day, I even consumed poison, so that I could bring it all to an end. I would no more bring shame to my family, I thought; if I’d die. And my parents took me to the hospital and saved me. I tried to end my life so many times, by cutting my veins and in many other ways, all of this out of hopelessness. I felt really scared. Even my brothers disliked me at that time. They disowned me, and threw me out of the house.
I was about twenty then, and I had no idea where I would go, and I just sat in a train and got off the train when I reached Nagpur. There, I met my group, fellow kinnars at the station. Actually, I was sitting somewhere around the place and was weeping badly. One of the kinnars from the group came and asked me why I had been sitting there all that while. I told them that my family had disowned me, and thrown me out of the house. The kinnar community that I met, they made me realize that I was a kinnar, kept me with them and my guru Haseena gave me my new name – Naaz, since I had a boy-name earlier. They also gave me some gifts in the naming-ceremony. Before that, I had always been confused about my identity, about who I had been all this while.
Initially, when we are born, we have a gender. Then, the penis doesn’t get developed as natural. That’s when we’re termed as a kinnar (eunuch). Now, that has to be corrected through surgery, and made like the female parts. I never knew that I could have female parts, that I could become like a girl, and that these all things are possible. I had no idea, to whether I should become a girl or what. Now I’ve realized that these days, one can become a girl or a boy through surgery and I also had my main surgery done a year ago. Now, I’d be called a transgender girl. It cost me about One Lakh Rupees for the surgery. I had joined the kinnar group, and stayed with them for about one year, earned money by begging in the markets, traffic-signals and trains, and got approximately Five Thousand Rupees in a day.
During this time, I fell in love with Bilal Khan. We met at the train, when I went for the collections and all. We started talking, and liking each other, and he used to drop me wherever I wanted to go, he was an auto-driver. And we fell in love this way, and got married at a dargah. My mother-in-law never liked me, because I was a kinnar and I could not give birth to a child. My husband supported me at that time, and tried to convince them that he loved me, and they shouldn’t kick me out of the house. I stayed with them for a month, and one day, my mother called me, to ask how I was. By that time, I had decided to flee from Nagpur and come back to Raipur anyhow. I did so. What else could have I done? I had no choice. My husband had also given up on me finally. He couldn’t take a stand for me, in front of his family. I was scared too, so I had to flee. We got a divorce (talaaq) at phone. I used to pick up his calls for a while, till he got married again.Today he’s happy in his life, and we don’t talk anymore.
Now, I again started going to the kinnar’s group meetings, and to child-births and all such ceremonies, and used to bless them, dance for them and earn that way. In one of our meetings, Priyank Sir (Founder, Nukkad Teafe) also joined us. He asked me if I wished to work for them. I agreed. All we could ever ask for was a respectful job, and I was getting that finally. That was one lucky day for me. Because, no one is ready to give us a job, since we don’t have that much acceptance and education. Though nowadays, government is providing jobs and allowing us to be a part of the Municipality, or to work in Beauty Parlors, or Police Stations.
Priyank Sir took me to Nukkad, and it was in its initial days at that time. Now we’re going to complete a year working at Nukkad Bhilai. I usually wear a yellow dress at work, that’s my favorite. Sometimes when the maids don’t come at work, we readily clean the floors and do the dishes as well. I have my other transgender friend called Chand here as my co-worker. She has a similar story as mine. She was betrayed by her husband, who married her just for satisfying his lust, and was already a married man. She’s also single and independent now. Everyone talks to us nicely now, and calls us didi (sister) or ma’am. There’s a sense of respect that we get here. The environment is such. I live with my family, my parents and brothers, in Raipur. They’ve accepted me as I am, brothers because I’m earning, and living respectfully, and mother because she’s my mother. I have less interaction though, with my father. I travel to Bhilai for work daily, and I even struggle when I travel for work. Sometimes, boys tease me on my way back home, when it’s late at night. And all I could do is to remove my shirt, and they’d get scared, and then, people would blame our kinds for being shameless. Like the entire fault is with us. Why can’t they just respect who we are and let us be?
I am twenty-nine now. I’ve applied for a post in the police department, since we’ve recently got to know that government is providing us all these jobs and education. I love to go for shopping, I like to watch movies and dress up and apply make-up and kajal. I believe, others should also see us, and understand that if Naaz is working, they too can, and that there’s much more satisfaction in working, than in begging. People spit at us, make fun of us, frown, abuse and look at us as if we do not belong here, among them. We can become a part of the main-stream as well, but only when we believe we can. I only want to dream, that I have a life where I have my own hero, my husband, who loves me unconditionally. I hope I will get a job in the police department, where I’ve applied. I hope I will get all of this, by Allah’s grace!