I was recently first connected with Laxmi Narayan Tripathi via our OutBüro on LinkedIn Group and connected directly as a 1st-degree contact when I noticed a posting from her in the group about Kineer Drinking Water. She is a transgender activist and social entrepreneur that works tirelessly for the transgender community in India and thereby around the world. She’s an activist, entrepreneur, dancer, actress and more than anything a compassionate human who is leveraging her skills and energy to help others to belong, be safe, feel dignity and be empowered.
We at Kineer are at empowering the transgender/third-gender Indian community with employment opportunities and more.
You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes and difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make. – Laxmi Narayan Tripathi
India’s transgender women community, or Hijra, has been a part of the subcontinent for about as long as civilization has. With a recorded history of over 4,000 years and is mentioned in ancient texts, the Hijra community is a testament to the sexual diversity that is integral yet often forgotten in Indian culture.
However, when the Indian subcontinent came under colonial rule during the 19th century, British authorities sought to eradicate and criminalize the Hijra community through various laws. These laws were later repealed after India attained independence.
While the Hijra community is still revered by society at large and celebrated in religious and spiritual ceremonies, they are often the victims of abuse and discrimination. Violence and hate crimes against the community are common, as is housing and other harassment and discrimination.
Although the hijras are human beings full of efficiency and human dignity beyond the male-female dichotomy, the government has not taken proper initiatives for their upliftment. Our society has just rejected their different physical complexities.
Hijras are boycotted from their own family, society, and state. Their own family hides them to cover the so-called ‘shame’ and neglect the truth that hijras are not responsible for what they are. Society ignores the reality that they are just the third gender. Their gender is naturally constructed as diverse. For their diverse identity, they cannot even inherit their family properties. Their funeral activities are also not functioning properly as the persons related to those rituals are not willing to conduct funeral activities when he comes to know that it’s a dead body of a hijra!
Although some attempts are taken for the hijras by the government and some non-governmental organizations who work for conserving human rights, those are really insufficient. We cannot step forward leaving these people having diverse gender identity far behind. Obviously, they have the ability to serve various sectors, but at present, they are not playing that role just because of not getting an opportunity. They could become talented doctors, engineers, intelligent scientists, scholars and what not?
Creating a Solution Through Water
The plight of the Hijra Community (Third/Neutral gender) is not hidden from anyone but still, no action has been taken towards providing a sustainable employment/ income source for them. They are left with a choice to either beg on the roads or to indulge in Skin Trade. It was surprising to see that the grants too were only focused on ways of distributing condoms or taking HIV/ safe sex sessions. Which we feel is just another way of labeling/ approving their indulgence in the skin trade.
Kineer Seeking Corporate Customer Partners and Distributors
Kineer Drinking Water is seeking direct corporate customers who serve water to their customers/staff as well as distributors. This is social entrepreneurs where when you serve Kineer Water you are making a statement that you support empowering the community with jobs and a future of safety and security.
If you serve bottled water for any reason, you are a perfect corporate partner customer. Kineer would appreciate the opportunity to provide the refreshing water you need and the transgender community will be grateful for your support of their employment and lives of dignity.
Water Not Kineer’s Only Product or Service to assist the Community
Most entrepreneurs work tirelessly to realize the potential of one business. Laxmi formed Kineer Services which not only has the drinking water brand yet the following services/products:
- Kineer Packaged drinking water plants
- Kineer Cosmetics and washroom amenities range
- Kineer Education platform
- Kineer Mental health Helpline
- Kineer National Cricket league
- Kineer manpower Placement and Diversity inclusion platform
- Kineer corrective surgeries helpline
- Kineer Security Services
- Kineer Dance and fine arts academy
- Kineer BPO
- Kineer apparels and lifestyle accessories
- Trans Queen India events
Kineer Services Pvt. Ltd was formed with a vision bringing about a Paradigm Shift for the members of the sexual minorities. They are not only working towards creating dignified employment opportunities for the members of the sexual minorities but is also working towards ensuring the mental and physical health of this neglected community is taken care of.
About Laxmi Narayan Tripathi
She is the Acharya Mahamandaleshwar of the Kinaar Akhada, a transgender rights activist, dancer, and actress. She was the first transgender person to represent Asia-Pacific at a UN task meeting in 2008 and represented the region again at the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne. She works with numerous NGOs, including the Astitva Trust, the Asia Pacific Transgender Network and Maharashtra Trithiya Panthi Sangatana, to promote the equality of transgender individuals. She was one of several petitioners in the Supreme Court’s landmark judgment recognizing the ‘third gender’ and is a member of the core committee set up by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment for Transgender Rights and Upliftment. She is the subject of two books, Me Hijra, Me Laxmi (written by R. Raj Rao) and Red Lipstick: The Men in My Life (written by Pooja Pande).