Frontlist | India’s 1st publication for & by trans community is coming soon
India is about to get its first online magazine solely dedicated to the trans community. According to Mumbai Mirror, Trans News is scheduled for an official launch date of November 1, 2020, and will be available in both English and Tamil. Designed to celebrate the beauty, witness the struggles, and advance the economic empowerment of the country’s trans population, the publication will offer everything from fashion coverage to recipes, reported features to poetry.
Per the magazine’s founder, trailblazing trans advocate Priya Babu, the magazine will use exclusively trans models and has already hired three trans reporters.
“There is less space available in the mainstream media to speak about the issues of transgender people,” said Padmini Prakash, one of three trans reporters slated to contribute stories to the monthly, in a separate interview. “So, through the Trans News magazine, we will bring out all aspects of the lives of [the] transgender community.”
For Priya, the latter point is essential. That’s why in addition to publishing stories capturing all manners of trans life, including explanatory videos on key subjects related to transness, the online publication will provide a separate hub titled “Shop.” Here, trans entrepreneurs and makers will be given a platform and a network through which to reach new clients and consumers.
“We started this segment as there are many talented [trans women] and [trans men] who are unable to access a suitable platform to sell their products,” Priya said.
Trans News appears poised to have a substantial audience. According to a 2014 census, India is home to at least 490,000 trans people, although activists estimate the actual trans population to be as much as six to seven times greater. Stigma and discrimination against the nation’s trans community is widespread, as are grassroots efforts toward combating this marginalisation.
For decades, Priya has been a leader in these efforts, focusing her advocacy in recent years on the necessity of spreading awareness of the history and customs of trans people in India. To further this initiative, the author and activist founded the Transgender Resource Center, an organisation and community gathering place, in 2017. Housed out of a portion of Priya’s Madurai apartment, the centre is a first-of-its-kind resource that is home to a collection of books on trans themes in English and Tamil, newspaper clippings pertinent to trans history, and more than 50 films and documentaries focused on trans issues.
The centre will also serve as the publisher of Priya’s latest venture. Although the first few issues of Trans News will only be available in English and Tamil, Priya has said that the online magazine will soon be available in Hindi.
This article originally appeared on Them.us