I have come to understand that even though prostitution and homosexual intercourse goes against Hijra beliefs, the Hijras who participate in these activities do it because they cannot make a living any other way. Begging doesn’t get them that much money, and there aren’t enough blessing ceremonies to go to for all the Hijras to make a good living. As much as they don’t want to do this, they have to, just as they feel they have to become Hijras. There are, according to Nanda, many Indian men who have homosexual tendencies but are married to women. These men come to the Hijras for prostitution. Although these Hijras are ‘real,’ they blur the line because they are participating in activities contrary to their beliefs. To me, they are just doing what they have to in order to get by.
1999 The Hijras of India: Neither Man nor Woman. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company.
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