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RAWALPINDI: Punjab Culture and Information Department on Friday decided to allow transgender persons to participate in ‘Voice of Punjab’ competition and extended the registration date till March 1.

The competition will begin on March 10 in Rawalpindi, Multan, Lahore and Faisalabad.

After selecting three top singers from all the four regions, the grand finale will be held in Lahore.

RAC Director Waqar Ahmed said that the Punjab government had not only initiated measures for welfare and economic protection of artists but was going to hold the competition to discover street talent.

The transgender people will also be provided a chance to prove their talent and to get themselves recognised as artist.

He said that giving she-males a chance to participate in the Voice of Punjab is in fact a practical step on the part of Information and Culture Department to recognise them as equally respectable citizen of Pakistan and prove that they enjoy equal rights in the society.

He said artists health insurance scheme provided a medical cover of about half a million rupees to artists and their families and closing date of submission of forms for this scheme has been extended till March 5.

Conditions of domicile and verification by public representatives have been done away with for the convenience of artists.

He said the participation in the Voice of Punjab contest had been opened and registration would continue till March 1.

The RAC director said the first three winners of the contest would be presented with cash rewards of Rs500,000, Rs300,000 and Rs100,500 respectively.

Published in Dawn, February 23rd, 2019