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16 Apr 2024, Edition - 3199, Tuesday

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Everyday is a #Metoo moment for us, says Kalki Subramaniam

Archana Rohit


Coimbatore : LGBT activist and artist Kalki Subramaniam says, “I too had a #metoo moment with high profile businessmen, politicians and actors. I will talk when the time is right. If you are a celebrity you will think twice before outing the name. It could be because of fear, because of backlash and the most important reason you may lose your career, go into depression.”

“When I was transitioning I have had #metoo moment at airport, in trains, over internet, it was every other day. High profile businessmen check my profile, they see I am an actor and then they send me a message. Saying what are your payment options?. At first I thought, he is asking about my art and then I figure out that he has not even selected my art. It is later that it struck me that he was wanting to pay to sleep with. After, 2 months the same incident repeated. It’s ironic that they men decide that you are a sex slave, sex worker and your body is for pleasure and that you can pay and use them. They have this notion that transwomen are transpeople are easy lay because many of them are poor and most of them need money so they get into prostitution.” she said

“Sexual harassment is common for our community. It’s been there since ages. Men use their power, fame and money to sleep with woman and put women in vulnerable situations. In the name of culture we refuse to spread the knowledge about gender and equality to our children. The result is when they become adults they abuse women, they abuse transfemales, everyday is a #metoo moment for us because parents don’t teach men to respect daughters.” she added

“LGBT community is in shackles trying to break free. They are trying to find their livelihood, proper house. Where do we go with the sexual harassment? A fact is you can never sensitise men as the idea of women in their head is to use, abuse and reuse them. The only thing you can do is stand up and be very strong,” she said

According to a recent survey, more than one in three transwomen and one in two transmen have been sexually assaulted — and the rates of such crime against non-binary people are even higher. Indecent and inappropriate advances were just an add-on to the ignominy and ostracism they have suffered through the centuries, she feels.

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