Voices of the others
To mark the Human Rights Day, 'Rongberong', the theatre group of Badhan Hijra Sangha (an organisation working with the intersex community in Bangladesh), staged a play titled Amra Manush, Chai Manusher Adhikar at the Engineers' Institute Auditorium, Dhaka. Rongberong is the only theatre troupe representing the hijra community.
In our country, the general impression of the intersex community is not positive. They are considered 'outsiders', forced to live on the fringes of society. They are often denied of the basic human rights.
Written and directed by Subas Biswas Shuvo, the play featured various issues -- social isolation of the intersex community in our country, discrimination by the society, prostitution and risks of HIV transmission and more. The play was staged with an aim to generate awareness on the intersex community.
Rongberong was founded in 2005. The troupe works to generate awareness through plays. In our society people show very little interest in the lives of hijras. Ignorance results to misunderstanding and mistreatment. Rongberong wants to circulate the message that hijras have just as much rights as anyone else in the society.
This was the third production by the troupe. Proceeds from the show will be donated to the Sidr victims.
Rongberong staged their first play Modhyobartini on March 2006. The second production was staged on December 1, 2006, on World AIDS Day. The group has also staged some street plays.
Prior to the play, a brief discussion was held. Pinky Sikder, president of Badhan Hijra Sangha delivered the welcome speech. Theatre personality Asaduzzaman Noor and Dr. Sharful Islam Khan, associate scientist of ICDDR, B were also present at the occasion.