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Two hurt as hijra gangs clash

Two hurt as hijra gangs clash

Gangs of hijras, India's third gender caste, clashed in the streets of Ahmedabad, Gujarat, on Thursday in a fight for territory.

Two people were injured in the fracas, which The Times of India reported began after a group led by Renuka De, 32, went to various shops in Vastrapur and began demanding money.

A rival group, led by Rafaqat Husain aka Nitu De, arrived on the scene shortly after and began arguing with Renuka De's gang.

According to police, the incident took place at the Ganesh temple near Vastrapur lake, with both groups staking claim over the area and asking each other to leave.

However, Nitu De's group had come prepared with swords, knives, hockey sticks and lathis.

'They soon launched an attack and beat up five or six of the other group's members,' a police official told The Times of India.

'They then got hold of Renuka De and cut her hair, which is considered to be an abuse.'

Hijras have had a presence in the sub-continent for thousands of years and live in highly organized communities.

However, many live at the margins of society with very low status and get their income from performing at ceremonies, begging, or sex work.

Hijras are often encountered on streets, trains, and other public places demanding money from people. If refused, the hijra may attempt to embarrass the man into giving money, using obscene gestures.