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Saro Imran: The first Pakistani transgender to get admission in Ph.D. in London

Saro Imran becomes Pakistan’s first transgender who gets admission in a Ph.D. at the University of Westminster, London.

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Transgender rights advocate Saro Imran is based in Pakistan. The School of Organizations, Economy and Society (SOES), which administers the program, accepts applications from students who are interested in conducting research in the general fields of economics, entrepreneurship, and human resource management.

Hailing from Punjab, Imran got her Mphil degree a year ago from Bahaudin Zakariya University Multan. While speaking about studying abroad, Saro said that she will continue to work for transgender rights and their economic uplift so that they can play their role in national growth and boost the country’s economy.

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The shooting of a transgender activist one month ago and a recent wave of attacks against the transgender community in Pakistan are extremely concerning, according to the global civil society alliance CIVICUS.

“We urge the authorities in Pakistan to organize prompt and impartial investigations into the attacks and make sure the perpetrators are brought to justice without delay,” the group said in an Oct. 8 statement.

Transgender activist Gul Panra was killed by an unidentified gunman in Peshawar’s Tehkal area on Sept. 8. Another transgender person, Tariq alias Chahat, was injured in the same attack.

The shooting occurred after a group of transgender people performed at a wedding function and was preparing to leave. A police official said four suspects had been detained in connection with the shooting, but no further progress has been reported.

In another incident, a transgender woman was allegedly gunned down by her younger brother in Swabi city on Sept. 12. Saad Khan had gone to Rawalpindi and Islamabad to take part in several dance performances, which her family opposed. She was shot when she returned.

Read more: First transgender doctor, Sarah Gill, gets a job at JPMC

On Oct. 6, another transgender person was seriously injured after being shot on the way home to Shahmansoor after performing in a music concert in Buner.

“The authorities must take serious steps to investigate these brutal attacks and killings. Ensuring justice and accountability for the violence perpetrated against transgender people in Pakistan will send a signal that such acts will not be tolerated and that all citizens — no matter what their gender identity — will be protected,” said Josef Benedict, CIVICUS Asia-Pacific civic space researcher.