Pakistan’s first transgender news anchor survived a gun attack on Thursday outside her residence in Lahore. Marvia Malik was returning home from the pharmacy when two gunmen opened fire on her. Malik reportedly survived the attack, and stated to Dawn that the attack had been preceded by threatening phone calls regarding her transgender advocacy.
News anchor Marvia Malik has just survived a gun attack. This is the direct consequence of the hate speech & incendiary words that the likes of Maria B, Senator Mushtaq or Youth Club use against the trans community. Your words can cost people’s lives. Say NO to transphobia pic.twitter.com/PKvDfhaiGg
— Muneeb Qadir (@muneebqadirmmq) February 24, 2023
It was in 2018 that she became the first transgender news anchor in Pakistan, making history and breaking barriers in the conservative Muslim country. She made her debut appearance on Kohenoor News, a private news channel in Lahore, and quickly gained attention and praise for her groundbreaking achievement.
Marvia had faced discrimination and rejection in the past due to her gender identity, but she persisted in pursuing her dreams of becoming a journalist. Her appointment as a news anchor was seen as a significant step forward in promoting inclusivity and diversity in Pakistan, where transgender people often face social stigma and discrimination.
Marvia’s appointment was also a significant milestone for the transgender community in Pakistan, as it signaled a shift towards greater acceptance and recognition of transgender individuals in the country. It was a positive step towards breaking down the barriers that have traditionally limited opportunities for transgender individuals, and promoting greater representation and inclusivity in the media and other sectors.