Transwoman initiates the First Internet Strike in Nepal

Kathmandu (Pahichan) August 4- LGBTI people who are stigmatized by the society, do have talents inside themselves and are making a change. A lot of transwomen in Nepal, who have come out to society, have been facing various types of discrimination and stigma, are still creating a change. Among those people, Rukshana Kapali is a young teenager transgender woman who is deliberately working not just in the field of LGBTI rights, but also Newa issues and social issues of her concern.

Recently, she had come up with a different of Internet Strike. Internet Strike is not a common word in Nepal and people have their own assumptions while they hear this term. Rukshana Kapali released a blog article on 14 July in her personal blog calling for an Internet Strike and then on 30 July released a video on Youtube calling for an Internet Strike.

“Internst Strike is a new concept in country like Nepal. Although this had happened few times in other countries, this was first time in Nepal. Internet Strike has various forms, but here in Nepal, we used hashtag movement, profile picture movement and viral stuff for doing so”, Rukshana reported, “Our agenda was for the grooming problems in Kathmandu Valley, from deep centralization, over-population, environment, heritages to displacement of natives in name of development.”

The initiation was kicked off on August 1 where thousands of people changed their profile picture and used the hashtag #SaveNepaValley. “No, this is not just my initiation. I have am a part of the core team. This is the initiation of Save Nepa valley Movement. This is the initiation of every resident in this valley. This is the initiation for every Nepalese citizen. I am thankful to Kapil Dev Thapa sir and Jitendra Bajracharya sir from Road Expansion Victims’ Struggle Committee to introduce me with this idea. Then I took forward. Suman Saymi and Bidya Shrestha from same committee have also helped me here.”. She has also been a leading person in one of the youth group called Nepal Mandal Youth Group.

“Our youth group works on Indigenous Newa issues. As a transgender woman, I am out to them. I have never been discriminated. I am treated very good. There is no discrimination and all the team are friendly. This initiation was nothing without them”, Rukshana said. The initiation also received more than 13 thousand tweets to successfully become in the heat list of the day. This First Internet Strike has been successfully known as “Dese Majoo Hartaal” which literally means “the strike that never happened in the country”

“I would like to first of all thank to everyone who participated in this Internet Strike, without them this movement was nothing. Everyone is appreciated”, she says. Rukshana Kapali, is not just active on LGBTI issues but also in various other grounds, and her experiences on this is something to learn. “We called for this on August 1, but looking at the eagerness of people we continued to August 2. On August 3 we thousands of people gathered in Maitghar Mandala and raised voice”, Rukshana said, “It is not necessary that LGBTI people are just doing round LGBTI rights advocacy. Yes, being a transgender woman, it is my basic duty to speak on LGBTI issues, but if we LGBTI people start moving towards the social arenas, then only will we be accepted.”