Over derogatory remarks, Tripura LGBTQ activist slams minister

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Over derogatory remarks, Tripura LGBTQ activist slams minister

Agartala: Sneha Gupta Roy, member of Tripura Transgender Welfare Board and head of state’s first NGO for the transpersons, Swabalamban, on Tuesday condemned the critical statement of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Minister Ratan Lal Nath on “sex change operations”. According to Roy, the minister made “derogatory” remarks against the LGBTQ community in Tripura.

“We have come across a video in which he had said that conversion of gender is a threat to society. This is completely against the free will and personal liberty of an individual. The Central government has undertaken a lot of initiatives for free treatment and welfare for the people belonging to the LGBTQ community. In Tripura as well, the government is framing policies for the welfare of transpersons. But such statements from a responsible minister make the situation tougher for people like us,” Roy asserted.

According to her, the LGBTQ in Tripura face social discrimination and bullying for their identity. “As a senior minister of the state, he should have avoided making such comments. His views can motivate others to spew venom against the transpersons,”, she added.

Seeking an apology from the Minister, Roy demanded CM Dr Manik Saha’s intervention in the matter. “I think Chief Minister Dr Manik Saha should look into these issues. His government has taken multiple steps to help transpersons who faced multiple attacks in public recently. I thank the government for the initiatives but how can we expect a senior minister to speak like this in public gatherings,” said Roy. When asked if she would raise the issue with the CM, Roy said, “On multiple occasions, I tried to get an appointment with the Chief Minister but failed to meet him because of his busy schedule. I want to apprise him of the developments in welfare activities for transpersons. I hope the Chief Minister will give his appointment someday soon.”

It is worthy to note here that Roy is the first transwoman of Tripura. According to data, there are altogether 150 transwomen in the state and the number of transmen is around 50.

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