19/10/2015 6:14 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

Large Number Of Third Gender And Transgenders To Participate In Simhastha-Kumbh For The First Time

Members of Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community taking part in 7th Edition of Delhi Queer Pride Parade 2014 in New Delhi on November 30, 2014. Hundreds of LGBT activists marched through the streets of the Indian capital.

BHOPAL -- For the first time, a large number of eunuchs are expected to take a holy dip and participate in the rituals of the 2016 Simhastha-Kumbh in Madhya Pradesh's Ujjain district, where a separate Kinnar (transgender) akhada has come up.

"Ten thousand eunuchs from India and many transgenders from different parts of the world are expected to take part in the Simhastha which will be held from April 22 to May 21 next year," renowned spiritual guru of Ujjain, Rishi Ajaydas told today.

"We have already opened a separate akhada (camping ground) for Kinnars in my ashram on October 13. At this inaugural function, eunuchs from 17 states took part," he said.

"We had talks with eunuchs of Bangkok, who are eager to take part in Simhastha," the spiritual guru said.

"I have been working for the upliftment of eunuchs since last seven years. We create awareness of education, health and other things among this community," Rishi Ajaydas said.

He said there were nearly 1.25 crore transgenders across the world.

Traditionally there are 13 akhadas for Simhastha. But with the new transgender one, this number will rise to 14.

The setting up of the new akhada might face opposition from the conservative seers, some devotees feel.

"Traditionally, 13 akhadas take part in Simhastha. There are no rules of their government recognition," Ujjain Collector Kavindra Kiyawat told .

About the possible backlash in the wake of eunuchs' akhada, he said he would not comment on it.

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