We are human; We want human rights.

That is the thundering title of a play by a theatre group working with the intersex (hijra) community of Bangladesh. The play was written and directed by Subhas Biswas Shuvo and performed by Rongberong theatre group. The objective was to create greater awareness of the marginilisation this community faces in mainstream society. READ MORE HERE. You will note the presence of heavyweight politician A Noor (noted in the text of the report). Yet in what capacity was he there? I hope as a human being, as an actor and as a politician (and not Hasina underling).

A friend of mine - a film editor - wants to do a short doc on this community. He is collecting information currently. Any help from any experts out there would be greatly appreciated. Get in touch with me.

Our subject matter overlaps a little. I have started finding out about prostitution in the context of rickshaw drivers and their lives. A very brave woman film-maker and I are hoping to explore and see if we can get anywhere with this subject. Its not a ride in the park this. He he..I couldn’t resist the pun there. She ( and I will reveal her name shortly) has already made some headway in getting herself accepted by the rickshaw drivers. I am impressed by the small NGOs and activists who are doing the hard slog, unrecognised and poorly supported. Anyway, here is an interesting article about the sustainability of prostitution by Md. Khairul Alam.

….In some countries, including Bangladesh, presence of prostitution and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) is systematically denied, being considered a taboo by the majority of the society. There is no official record of the prevalence of residence base & fleeting sex workers in Bangladesh. Lack of any reliable records of the underground sex industry makes the data shaky. Sex workers in Bangladesh are suffering from unavailability of medical services and knowledge about STIs. Social stigmatization stops these resource-deprived women from seeking proper medical care.