Nida Mehboob

A rare photograph of Julie in her teens with her sister and brother who were the only ones who fully accepted her gender expression.

A rare photograph of Julie in her teens with her sister and brother who were the only ones who fully accepted her gender expression.

"I can't live with my family because of my gender expression. I miss them all the time. I celebrate all occasions alone. I wish to live in my home with the freedom of my gender expression. I will fight for it until my last breath and one day I will go back home and they will accept me as their daughter."

"I can't live with my family because of my gender expression. I miss them all the time. I celebrate all occasions alone. I wish to live in my home with the freedom of my gender expression. I will fight for it until my last breath and one day I will go back home and they will accept me as their daughter."

Asha and Noor were the only members from the trans community who openly supported Julie's fight against a mob that gang raped her in 2016. They were threatened by the gang but kept coming to the protests that Julie was leading.

Asha and Noor were the only members from the trans community who openly supported Julie's fight against a mob that gang raped her in 2016. They were threatened by the gang but kept coming to the protests that Julie was leading.

After work Julie often enjoys time with her friends, such as during a birthday party, as seen here. 

After work Julie often enjoys time with her friends, such as during a birthday party, as seen here. 

Dance and music is a big part of trans community and great pride is taken in these skills, as trans woman will use this to earn a living at private parties. Such gatherings are often very private and intimate, though, as they are looked down upon by the majority.

Dance and music is a big part of trans community and great pride is taken in these skills, as trans woman will use this to earn a living at private parties. Such gatherings are often very private and intimate, though, as they are looked down upon by the majority.

Mateen is Julie's boyfriend of 10 years. Because of his religious background he was forced to leave his family to be with Julie. In Pakistan it is illegal for a trans person to marry a cis gender.

Mateen is Julie's boyfriend of 10 years. Because of his religious background he was forced to leave his family to be with Julie. In Pakistan it is illegal for a trans person to marry a cis gender.

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    A rare photograph of Julie in her teens with her sister and brother who were the only ones who fully accepted her gender expression.

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    "I can't live with my family because of my gender expression. I miss them all the time. I celebrate all occasions alone. I wish to live in my home with the freedom of my gender expression. I will fight for it until my last breath and one day I will go back home and they will accept me as their daughter."

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    Asha and Noor were the only members from the trans community who openly supported Julie's fight against a mob that gang raped her in 2016. They were threatened by the gang but kept coming to the protests that Julie was leading.

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    After work Julie often enjoys time with her friends, such as during a birthday party, as seen here. 

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    Dance and music is a big part of trans community and great pride is taken in these skills, as trans woman will use this to earn a living at private parties. Such gatherings are often very private and intimate, though, as they are looked down upon by the majority.

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    Mateen is Julie's boyfriend of 10 years. Because of his religious background he was forced to leave his family to be with Julie. In Pakistan it is illegal for a trans person to marry a cis gender.

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Julie is a 28 year old trans woman from Pakistan. She was born in a small village near Faisalabad. Like most trans-genders she was abandoned by her family around the age of 10. She got into Guru Chela culture that requires them to beg on the streets, do sex work and dance in parties for living.

Julie was victim of gang rape in 2016. It wasn't the first time but this time it changed her and her life forever because she decided to speak out and fight for justice for herself and others. Julie is a self-motivated, dynamic community leader who is fighting against social inequality, especially the stigma and discrimination faced by her community at large.


This project, Changemakers, stories of Impact, was produced by Rutgers in collaboration with partners.

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