Five people were arrested for the alleged assault and harassment of transgenders near Sialkot on Monday after a video surfaced on social media showing a man brutally beating a transgender person.
The five men arrested include Aijaz alias ‘Jajja’, Asad Khan, Ajab Gul Khan, Ansar ‘Phool’, and Kamran, the FIR said, adding that a search is underway for the arrest or rest of the suspects involved in the incident.
A copy of the FIR filed by Riaz, alias Azmoo claims that several men ─ including Aijaz ‘Jajja’ who allegedly beat a transgender woman in the viral video ─ entered the premises where several transgender people live.
The men then proceeded to verbally harass the transgenders, the FIR claims, while one man beat a transgender person.
As this happened, the other men allegedly searched the house and took several thousand rupees and the transgender people’s mobile phones into their possession.
The FIR also said that these men, along with several others, often visit the house and threaten the transgender people who live there.
The men allegedly also ordered the transgender people to pay them Rs0.1 million each time any of them celebrates a birthday.
A video that began making the rounds on social media shows a man suspected to be Aijaz ‘Jajja’ beating a transgender person using a belt. The man is heard asking the person filming the incident to make sure his actions are being recorded properly.
The suspect holds the transgender person down by pressing his foot down on her neck and twisting her arm.
People around him attempt to keep him from hitting the wailing transgender but their pleas are only effective after the man takes multiple swipes at the transgender person with the belt.
A transgender person who claims to have been present at the time of the incident provides a differing account of the incident in another video that emerged online.
She claims the incident took place in Sialkot where the FIR was registered.
Originally from Faisalabad, the transgender person claimed she fled the city for Sialkot after allegedly being beaten and gang raped.
“I came here to get away from the violence but I have not been able to find peace here [Sialkot],” she said.
She claimed that she was present when the other transgender person was brutally beaten up in their own home and alleged that later that night, a number of transgender people were rounded up and taken to a third transgender person’s house where they were raped, beaten and humiliated throughout the night.
She pleaded for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif to take notice of the alleged violence against transgenders.
“Are we not human? Why are we treated worse than dogs? These politicians should fear the day a transgender person is born in their family,” she said, lamenting the lack of laws for the protection of transgender people in Pakistan.
“The government even has laws for the protection of dogs and other animals but they have no laws protecting us,” she added.
Station House Officer Sialkot handed the investigation over to Sub Inspector Mohammad Jameel and asked him to bring the culprits to justice.