Alisha Thapa is a native of Nepal, also known as Suraj earlier. It wasn’t until she started seeing changes in her body and hormones as she grew up that she realized she was transgender. When her family learned about her, unlike most families who would force their child to leave the house once they learned such things, her mother stood by her and was highly protective of her though her father was not that supportive.
They later relocated to Nasik, where she finished her Bachelor of Commerce degree but struggled to find work because of her transsexual status. Even though she was initially hired because of her dedication and hard work, her coworkers mistreated her and questioned her identity. She eventually left her employment because she was being mistreated, harassed, and unable to exercise her fundamental rights, like using the restroom. As she began to blame herself for every issue the family was experiencing, she decided to leave.
After going through all the ups and downs, she eventually found a man who fell in love with her, and the two later got married.
She heard that PCMC had a specific batch for LGBTQ students through Lighthouse. As a result, she enrolled in the foundation program, which she diligently completed. During her counseling, with Shurtika Mungi, the center head of Lighthouse, Pimpri, Alisha’s response about the isolation transgender people experience touched her when she was asked what separates them from straight people. And later, she was hired as a placement coordinator at Lighthouse Nigdi & Pimpri.
She was reminded of the times when people would see her with compassion, turn their backs on her, and give her alms, but now with the help of the lighthouse, how the tables had turned; presently, if some students accidentally bump into her on the way to work, they would not turn their backs but instead respectfully inquire about job opportunities, which makes her equally emotional and proud.