2019 can be said to be bridging the gaps in human dignity for the third gender in India. Two events may be noted, which, as usual the MSM missed out.
First is award of Padma Shri to Narthaki Natrajan, a Bharatnatyam dancer. Her resume:
Here is a video of her:
Kumbh in Prayagraj:
Kumbh means Aquarius. Jupiter completes rotation of sun in 12 years. Kumbh Mela, also called Kumbha Mela, in Hinduism, is a religious festival that is celebrated four times over the course of 12 years, the site of the observance rotating between four pilgrimage places on four sacred rivers—at Haridwar on the Ganges River, at Ujjain on the Shipra, at Nashik on the Godavari, and at Prayagraj (earlier Allahabad) at the confluence of the Ganges, the Jamuna, and the underground Sarasvati. Each site’s celebration is based on a distinct set of astrological positions of the Sun, the Moon, and Jupiter, the holiest time occurring at the exact moment when these positions are fully occupied. The Kumbh Mela at Prayag, in particular, attracts millions of pilgrims. In addition, a Maha Kumbh Mela is held every 144 years at Prayag.
Kumbh is also a summit or congregation of 13 akhara of different religious orders of hermits. Akhara means arena like boxing ring. Until independence, they used to carry arms for protection. They reside at unknown places in forests and hills.
This year a fourth akhara has been started for third gender with Laxmi Narayan Tripathi (also transliterated as Lakshmi) as its mahamandleshwar or head. Laxmi is a transgender rights activist, Hindi film actor and Bharatanatyam dancer in Mumbai, India. She was born in 1979 in Thane. Laxmi is a hijra or eunuch. In 2008, she represented Asia Pacific in United Nations and spoke of the plight of sexual minorities. Her picture:
It appears now she has entered in the order of sanyasis by becoming a hermit.
These developments have taken on top of various decisions of Supreme Courts in regards to LGBT community.
One directing the Govt to recognize the third gender. Another decriminalized the same sex relationship by reading down Victorian era law.
Added on Feb. 15, 2018:
A Muslim man Junaid Khan married Jaya a transgender in a Hindu temple. As per reports.