Andhra transgender commits suicide after police harassment


Police atrocities drove a trans person to suicide in Andhra Pradesh on Thursday after the law-enforcement authorities harassed her family and beat her up mercilessly.

The transgender Iliyana worked with a local organization in the Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh and was picked up by the police on the 28th of October. They also took another man, Naresh, for interrogation. Both worked for Sneha Sri Sadikaraka Welfare Society), a community-based organisation working for Men who have sex with Men, Transgender, Hijras, and Female Sex workers with support from the Andhra Pradesh AIDS Control Society (APSACS) and the India HIV/AIDS Alliance.

After the arrest, organization members along with allies and journalists went to the police station and managed to get Naresh freed the next day, but Iliyana was detained for further questioning. They were also beaten up before being released. A local paper Andhra Jyothi published an account of the incident.

After allegedly administering third degree, Iliyana was let go later in the day, but the police landed up at her home and threatened her. Unable to take the pressure, she killed herself on Thursday morning. Naresh too has resigned from the CBO. The incident underlines the covert nature of an anti-queer law, which leads to an atmosphere of fear and intimidation that allows the police to do as they please. The organization continues to fight for justice and Gaylaxy is proud to stand by them.

Dhrubo Jyoti
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