In a first, the Congress party has appointed Apsara Reddy, a trans woman, journalist and activist, as the National General Secretary of the party’s women’s wing – All India Mahila Congress (AIMC). The appointed was made by Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday. Following the appointment, Apsara became the first transgender person to be appointed as office-bearer in a national party.
“Congress is truly a party that built India and sustained us for generations with good policy and a sensitive and inclusive approach in governance. Rahul Gandhi ji’s commitment to fair representation of women, women-centric manifesto goals and dynamism are truly inspiring and I would be delighted to serve women across the country under his leadership,” she said after joining Congress on Tuesday.
Apsara was earlier a part of the BJP and the AIADMK. She quit BJP within a month of joining the party calling the party ‘regressive’ and then became the National Spokesperson of the AIADMK, a role offered to her by former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. However, Apsara quit the AIADMK due to differences with the party.
Known for her social activism since college-days, Apsara has also taken up high-profile cases of child rape and voiced out her support for the victims. Talking about her agenda as the new National General Secretary of the Women’s Unit, she said that she will work towards women’s economic empowerment, fighting against social injustices, helping women find their human rights and help contribute to the Congress party’s manifesto with women-centric policies. “I am truly excited to work with the dynamic President of the AIMC, Sushmita ji as she embodies strength, courage and a contagious determination to do the right-thing for women,” she added.
Laying out her plans as the newly appointed General Secretary, she said, “I will meet with a cross-section of women to address issues pertaining to their rights. This coming election I will campaign vociferously against the fascist BJP dictatorship that drives a coloured agenda that reduces people to what they eat, how they pray and how they love!”