Transgender woman shot dead in Pakistan

A Pakistani transgender activist poses for a photograph as they take part in a demonstration in Karachi on November 20, 2017. The event was held to mark World Transgender Day. / AFP PHOTO / ASIF HASSAN (Photo credit should read ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images)

A transgender woman has been shot dead in Pakistan, making her the 56th trans person to be killed in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region in the last three years.

Sheena, who lived in the Shewa area, was allegedly attacked by a group of armed men who beat her up and then shot her dead on Sunday night.

The death of the trans Afghan national, which was announced by TransAction Alliance, has put the community on alert after a surge in violence has affected the community.


Pakistani transgender people carry placards as they rally to mark World Aids Day in Karachi on November 30, 2013. (ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty)

56 transgender people have been killed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa since 2015, according to the Tribal News Network, in spite of the transgender community’s progressive campaigning and rallying for inclusion over the past few years.

Pakistan allows for trans people to obtain a “third gender” passport.

Transgender people can be their gender without medical approval.

Pakistani transgender activists take part in a demonstration in Karachi on November 20, 2017.
The event was held to mark World Transgender Day. (ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty)

However, there is growing concern over the government’s response to the swathe of violence directed at the trans community.

In the last month alone, a trans woman named Chutki was killed while traveling in an auto-rickshaw on Ring Road in Peshawar, and just three days prior, a trans woman named Chitrali was stabbed when she resisted a kidnapping attempt.

The country welcomed its first transgender anchor, Marvia Malik, onto their screens in March.

Malik said that she was “overwhelmed” by the support she received after her TV debut.

“I got a lot of appreciation from those associated with the fashion industry when I did catwalk modelling two weeks back, and now this … it’s quite overwhelming,” she told Reuters.

“I was thrown out after (10th grade) after which I joined a beauty salon, earned just about enough to put myself through college, but it was not easy. My story is no different from that of a hijra on the street you see begging.”

Pakistan’s trans community demanded that the government take on board their trans manifesto to help secure more social and political rights to ensure their safety.

The 33 demands were delivered to the government at the end of March.