40 trans people joined the Boy Scouts in Pakistan for the first time

Meka Beresford February 20, 2018
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The group that took the Boy Scouts oath (Trans Action Pakistan/Facebook)

(Trans Action Pakistan/Facebook)

A group of 40 transgender people have joined the Boy Scouts in Pakistan for the first time.

The group of trans activists made history in the country biggest group, which is based in Karachi, when they took their Scouts’ oath last week.

It was the first time that the Pakistan Boy Scouts Association (PBSA) recognised or allowed trans people to join.

The Boy Scouts are not gender-specific, despite what the name suggests, and so trans women were also welcome to take the oath.

Pakistani transgender protestors (ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images)

In Pakistan, the group works to support young people in their development – and the PBSA recognise that trans people also need this support.

PBSA said that they were happy to welcome the trans members to the scouts’ movement.

Atif Amin Hussain, the commissioner of the local IPC Sindh Boys Scouts, said that the PBSA was “open to all, without distinction of origin, race or creed”.

Akuter Mir, a secretary of the same group, added: “Transgender people are also youth, and we don’t discriminate on the basis of gender.”


Farzana Jan is one of many trans advocates who took the oath.

They were one of the first people in the country to have a passport which recognised their gender as ‘X’.

Speaking to The News, Jan said that it was comforting to see Pakistan steadily taking steps towards equality.

“We feel that we are being recognised as equal citizens of Pakistan as the level of acceptance among society at large has been increasing gradually,” they said.

Farzana Jan is the first to be issued a gender neutral Pakistani passport
Farzana Jan is the first to be issued a gender neutral Pakistani passport (Photo by TransAction Pakistan / Facebook)

The transgender community in Pakistan faces rife violence.

In 2016, a trans woman was shot in a violent attack after she refused to have sex.

Despite this, the community has remained strong in their fight for equality.

One trans woman recently petitioned the Lahore High Court for better treatment of trans people.

The petition called on Pakistan to provide better protection for the transgender community in light a rise of attacks and abuse.

Following the petition, the government called for the rights of the community to be re-assessed.

Since then, the country has made small progressive steps including the decision to include trans people in the census for the first time.

In Peshawar, a group of trans people successfully held a rare birthday party with the help and protection of the police guard.

Related topics: Asia, Pakistan

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