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Missing trans candidate running for election in India found ‘safe’

Missing trans candidate running for election in India found ‘safe’

Chandramukhi Muvvala (Photo: Facebook)

A transgender woman running for a state assembly seat in India who went missing earlier this week has appeared at a police station.

Chandramukhi Muvvala, who is 32, was reported missing in Hyderabad, in southern India on Tuesday (27 November).

But, according to local media, she appeared before the police station in Hyderabad late on Wednesday night.

‘She appeared before police, but did not say where she had gone,’ assistant commissioner of police K Srinivasa Rao reportedly told the Press Trust of India.

Muvvala also told police that she was safe, the official said.

Muvvala first announced her candidacy last week.

She is campaigning in the Telangana elections as a Bahujan Left Front candidate. By filing her candidacy, she made history as the first and only trans woman to do so.

White SUV

Muvvala went missing from her home on Tuesday morning. Telangana Hijra Samithi, a trans organization in the country, released a statement about Muvvala’s disappearance.

She was reportedly working on her campaign late into Monday (26 November) night. When members of the trans community arrived Tuesday morning to continue helping, they could not find her.

Her friends and family filed a missing persons report with Banjara Hills police

Vinu, a member of her campaign team, told the press CCTV footage showed a person lurking outside her home.

‘A white SUV came to the premises at 7.58 am. ‘A person could be seen in the video looking or searching, either for someone or for a location,’ he explained. ‘We suspect that this person is somehow linked to her disappearance.’

He added they approached the police later in the afternoon after waiting and ‘hoping she would come back by then’.

Time for trans people to be treated equally

‘Nowadays, power is enjoyed only by a few sections. I want to change that,’ Muvvala told local media when she launched her campaign last week.

She said it was time for trans people to be treated equally.

‘We should also have a say in all government schemes and programmes and 2-3% reservation in legislatures’ she reportedly said.

If she had enough support in her native Hyderabad, Chandramukhi would form a new transgender political party, she told the Times of India.

India’s transgender population have said they continue to experience violence despite a landmark win for the LGBTI community earlier this year.

In September, India’s Supreme Court ruled that a law making gay sex illegal was not constitutional. What’s more, the judges enshrined LGBT equality.

But trans women claim they remain vulnerable to violence, including from police.