Born in a poor family in Ambasamudram, Tamil Nadu, Esakki Muthu – as she is now known – was assigned male at birth. By the time she reached class 6, she noticed changes in her, which she discussed with her mother. Her mother told her to behave like other boys, but Esakki, of course, couldn’t.
After passing out of school in 2015, Esakki got admitted to Manonmaniam Sundaranar University (MSU) to study BBA in Govindaperi. This was the time when she felt the most changes within her.
“I completed my first year and decided to walk out of my home. I went to Kanyakumari and started living with other transgenders. While I was with them, I started to perform on stage. The dance shows helped me earn my living,” Esakki told The New Indian Express.
This year in February, Esakki decided to undergo a sex change surgery, against the wishes of her parents. But eventually, they took her home.
Esakki’s journey with MSU didn’t end there.
At a function held for transgenders by actor Raghava Lawrence in Tirunelveli, she found out about MSU offering free education to the community, and how the University’s Vice-Chancellor wanted them to study to lead a quality life.
Esakki decided to go back and study at the University and is completing her second year in BBA after discontinuing a few years ago.
She is the first transgender student at the University.
“My father suffered a stroke and could not work. My mother was the breadwinner of the family. She earned her income by rolling beedis. I aspire to become a police officer or work in any other government services like Village Administrative Officer,” she told the publication.
Not only her parents, Esakki’s classmates have also accepted who she is. The girls consider her as one among them, and the boys say that they never treated her differently earlier, so there was no question of doing so now.
Kudos for yet another step towards gender equality.