Chapter 008|Manidham Malarattum (Let Humanity Bloom)
Tara, a 28 year old trans-woman in Chennai, was found with 90% burn injuries near the Pondy Bazaar police station. On the morning of November 9, she succumbed to her injuries and died at Kilpauk Medical College hospital. According to the, police, it was a case of self-immolation but the matter is still a blur.
While we express our agitation and resistance towards acts of violence like Tara’s death, we must also resist and challenge the (larger) institutional violence that is perpetuated everyday and give a voice to those who go unheard.
Tara, like lot of other trans-women, was a sex worker. Does that dilute her right to live with dignity? Tara’s case was just one instance of the extreme physical and sexual harassment trans-women are subjected to by the police, in some cases leading to death. In a hyper-masculine, patriarchal society that is bifurcated on the lines of class, caste and gender, these acts of violence are mere expressions of a much larger problem.
“மனிதம் மலரட்டும்” (Manidham Malarattum) in Tamil which means, let “Humanity Bloom” as we stand in solidarity - an ode to those bold and beautiful lives that were lost not in vain, but to remind us constantly about the existence of oppression and discrimination, even now.
A collaboration with Snehidhi and Kattiyakaran || Funded by Aarogya Seva.