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Hijras are considered the oldest transgender culture in the world, dating back over 4000 years and recorded in the texts of the Mahabrata (religious epic of ancient India).  Wielding the power to bless or curse, they are deeply ingrained into the Indian culture.

 

In modern day India the majority scrape out a living by collecting alms (receiving money is exchange for blessings) or prostitution. Estimates state that 50-70% of India's hijras are HIV positive.  In 2014 I photographed the small, close knit group that lives in Mysore in the southern state of Karnataka.