Category Archives: Children and Youth

‘Maraka’ truths

By Zubeida Mustafa

SUICIDES by young men and women have been periodically reported from Gilgit-Baltistan (GB). Authentic figures are not available in the absence of scientific surveys and forensic facilities, which allows ‘honour’ killings to be masked as suicide. Neverthe­less, the suicide rate in this region is, arguably, higher than the average in Pakistan (8.9 per 100,000).

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Gender rights

By Zubeida Mustafa

IT goes to the credit of gender rights leader Bindiya Rana that Pakistan is counted among the 20-odd states to have given legal recognition to the ‘third sex’ — non-binary people. They were counted in Pakistan’s 2017 census and are entitled to ID cards. Conservative Pakistan can now be regarded as enlightened in the matter of gender legalities — but not in terms of transgender people’s acceptance and inclusiveness in society.

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The unheeded

I LISTEN to a transgender woman speak and my mind starts to churn.             

 I keep wondering what I would do if I had a transgender child? Keep her hidden from prying eyes? Hidden from my in-laws, or my own parents for that matter who might insist I send her away? Let my own inhibitions translate into something that my child would see as shame, which would make her hate herself? What would I do if I had to take her to the doctor?

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