Transgender made an impressive debut at the Kumbh Mela 2019. For decades Laxmi Narayan Tripathi has fought India’s conservative laws and beliefs to put her transgender community on a par with the rest of society, and now she has notched up a new milestone.
On Tuesday she and dozens of other resplendent “Kinnars” splashed in the sacred waters of the Ganges and Yamuna rivers alongside revered Hindu ascetics at the immense Kumbh Mela festival in northern India. It was the first time that members of India’s estimated two-million-strong transgender community have been allowed to do so at the festival, the biggest religious gathering in the world that got under way this week. “For us, this participation is about mainstream society accepting us. The creator is within us and once we die, we will go back to him. Our doors are open for all,” Tripathi told reporters last week.
The largest religious gathering of the world, named Kumbh Mela has been started in India as Millions of devotees took a holy dip at the Sangam — the confluence of the Ganga and Yamuna and the mystical Saraswati rivers — on Tuesday morning (Jan 15). The ancient city in northern Uttar Pradesh state rises alongside the banks of the Ganges, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati rivers.
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17 November, 2019