Pakistan: Transgender Rights Fighter – Society

Pakistan: Transgender Rights Fighter – Society

For four years, Pakistan has had one of the most liberal transgender laws in the world. Activist Nayyab Ali is fighting to keep it. She almost paid for it twice with her life.


David Piper

“I’ve been dead twice!” says Nayyab Ali in a brightly painted basement room in Islamabad. It smells of spices, the women start to cook their dinner, the smell of lamb stew. The first time Nayyab Ali was doused with acid, the second time her throat was cut. “Seven centimeters long, one centimeter deep”. Nayyab Ali pushes her scarf down to reveal the scars it otherwise hides. The perpetrators were too stupid to cut deep enough, which doesn’t surprise Nayyab Ali. She thinks she has enough to do with stupid people as an activist for transgender women in Pakistan.

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