They said the society, as a whole, should come forward with a positive attitude towards the socially excluded people for their coexistence in the society.
They were speaking at the district multisectoral consultation meeting "human rights, healthcare and vulnerability of SMS and hizra community: integrated efforts" organized by Bandhu Social Welfare Society (BSWS) at BGB Party Point.
Divisional Director of Health Dr AKM Ashraf Uuzzaman addressed the meeting as the chief guest with Civil Surgeon Dr Shahidul Islam presided.
Assistant Director of Health Dr Ferdousi Azmal, Chief Health Officer of Rajshahi City Corporation Dr FAM Anzuman Ara Begum and Executive Director of Light House Harun Ur Rashid spoke as special guests.
In terms of reducing STDs/HIV/AIDS related risk and vulnerability, the speakers called for adopting need-oriented measures like proper treatment, free medicine, free condom, awareness program, separate hospital and test of blood.
They articulated that their rights like human dignity, to work, equality and non-discrimination, freedom from all sorts of abuse and manipulation, equal access to education, security of person and property must be ensured.
BSWS Regional Programme Manager Rahmat Ullah Bhuiyan and Team Leader of Light House Ziauddin Ahmed Khanand presented two separate concept papers on the issue at the discussion.
They told the meeting that the members of transgender community are subjected to negligence and repression in every sphere of life including family and society.
The Hijra community is essentially deprived of several rights under the country's existing law, because it recognizes only two sexes, male and female. Time has come to promoting and protecting fundamental rights of the extreme socially excluded people.
All Bangladeshi governmental documents are prepared for male or female citizens. Hijras are left with no choice as they have to identify themselves as either male or female in those documents, they added.