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    Posted on 6 Oct 2015

    The Transgender Man Trapped In India By His Parents Is Finally Being Allowed To Return To The U.S.

    Shivy, born as Shivani Bhatt, has been harassed, abused, and trapped by his parents, who want to make him "a proper girl".

    This is Shivy, a 19-year-old transgender man who lives in California. He was born as a girl named Shivani Bhatt.

    This past June, after his parents found out he was transgender, he was brought to India under the pretence of meeting his ailing grandmother.

    His parents planned a two-week trip to India for him to meet his grandmother but once they arrived, his mother confiscated his passport, green card, and birth certificate. Shivy explains that his mother would often verbally and physically abuse him. His computer, phone, and internet access were taken away.

    After two weeks in India, his parents informed him that they wouldn't be sending him back to the U.S. despite his being enrolled in college there. Instead, they enrolled him at a university in Agra and hoped he would learn to "behave like a proper, cultured girl". His actions were closely monitored by his parents and grandparents.

    Shortly thereafter, Shivy's mother and brothers returned to the United States. Meanwhile in India, Shivy found his home's internet password and decided to take action toward returning to the US.


    In September, he uploaded a video on queer feminist organisation Nazariya's YouTube channel, explaining his entire struggle. Shivy said he escaped from Agra with the help of an LGBT NGO, and approached the Delhi High Court for protection and for help returning home.

    This Monday, the Delhi High Court ordered Shivy's parents to stop harassing him and allow him to return to the U.S.


    According to the BBC, Justice Siddharth Mridul said Shivy "would travel unaccompanied and will not be subjected to any harassment by the extended family upon arrival in the US". The police were also ordered to protect him for the remainder of his time in India.

    Furthermore, the BBC reported that his mother, who appeared in court, was ordered to return Shivy's documents, and agreed to provide the payment for his tuition fees and his air tickets back to the US.

    The Delhi High Court said that the treatment of Shivy, by his parents, amounted to “bigotry”.

    “The case was an example of family violence,” said Rituparna Borah, executive director of NGO Nazariya, according to the Indian Express. "The judge even mentioned that families don’t understand. This is an eye-opener."

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