A police officer in Pakistan has been suspended following a raid of a beach birthday party for a transgender person.
The party was held at Hawks Eye beach. It was raided following complaints from other beach-goers about hooliganism in the area.
The raid resulted in four transgender individuals being taken into custody.
‘A transgender birthday party was raided by the police in the afternoon after complaints from the public were received of loud music being played out at the beach hut,’ trans activist Bindiya Rana told The Express Tribune.
‘But questions should be raised at why transgender persons were harassed by the police despite the fact that we’ve laws protecting the transgender community. It’s quite unfortunate that transgender people can’t enjoy their birthday parties and were harassed so brutally by the police just for celebrating a community event.’
‘The police party arrived at the birthday event to break the commotion after complaints were received at 15 of a fight and loud music being played out at the function,’ Erum Awan of the Maripur police station told The Tribune.
Awan dismissed the claims of bribes being taken to stop the party and harassment against the trans community. No charges were filed against any of the transgender individuals in attendance.
‘We only had taken the transgender persons into our custody to save them from the commotion that erupted following the tensions between beach-goers and the transgender community. The transgender persons taken into the custody were released immediately without any FIR [first information report] filed against them,’ Awan stated.
Some of the trans people in attendance took to Facebook to share videos of the incident and what followed.
Now, according to Planet Transgender, the station house officer (SHO) of the Maripur police station has been suspended. The Deputy Inspector General of Police, Sharjeel Kharal, suspended the officer for allegedly manhandling guests at the party.
This suspension comes after dozens of trans people took to the street on 2 April to protest a similar raid. This time, at a wedding hall where a ‘doll party’ was taking place. The raid led to 67 people, including 27 trans individuals, being taken into custody.