Kendrapara: Over a year after the apex court recognized transgenders as third gender, a 32-year-old Odisha government gazetted officer on Monday made public her transgender identity.
Bought up as a boy named Ratikanta Pradhan and currently serving in the Orissa Financial Service, she has decided to be identified as Aishwarya Rutuparna Pradhan.
She said the April 15, 2014, Supreme Court ruling recognizing transgenders under the third gender category and guaranteeing their constitutional rights was the key factor she decided to embrace her selfhood. The very day the Supreme Court delivered its landmark verdict, I made up my mind to opt for third gender identity instead of male gender," she asserted.
A resident of a village in Kandhamal district of Odisha, Pradhan faced huge disapproval from her family members and friends, especially from her Armyman father, after she decided to change her identity. "Initially, my family and friends ostracized me. But now everyone have accepted me for what I am. I expect to be conferred transgender classification on government records very shortly," she said.
Pradhan aims to build shelter homes for the transgender community. She also wants to get herself involved in social campaigns to end the discrimination against the community.