PETALING JAYA: The 16 transgender women who were arrested at a wedding function were shaved bald and spent their first night in the Sungai Udang prison in Malacca on Tuesday.
Nisha Ayub, a volunteer of the transgender rights group Justice for Sisters (JFS) said they were isolated from the other male inmates.
She said that besides being forcibly shaved bald, they had been treated relatively well.
However, she said they were worried as it was the first time they had spent time behind bars.
According to prison regualtions, all male inmates are required to have their hair cut short prior to their detention.
"They are depressed. This is the first time they are spending time in prison. Most of them are mak andam (wedding planners) and they are worried that this will affect their reputation and income," she told The Star Online.
On Sunday night, the Negeri Sembilan Islamic Department arrested 17 transgender women for cross-dressing at a local wedding function in Bahau, Negeri Sembilan.
One of them was released as she was a minor.
The Syariah Court on Monday sentenced the 16 to a fine of RM950 each and seven days in prison under Section 66 of the state’s Shariah Criminal Enactment 1992.
The minor has to report to the Religious Department every month for the next one year.
Another JFS volunteer, S. Thilaga, said that an attempt to post bail for the transgender women on Wednesday at the Shariah court failed as the judge said that only their parents could bail them out.