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Behold the Inspiring Photos and Videos from the Grand Inauguration of Karnataka's First Shelter Home

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who we are

Raahi is a Karnataka-based organisation that works on the rights of the LGBTQIA+ community, with a special focus on the issues and needs of trans men and partners of trans men, queer, lesbian and bisexual women, gender non-conforming and non-binary persons, and persons with intersex variations. The name “Raahi'' was chosen through a collective process to symbolise our role as co-travellers on the journey towards dignity. 


Raahi is invested in strengthening education, training and sensitisation on gender and sexuality rights, building community theatre as a tool for critically engaging with the public and ongoing advocacy with the State and its agencies.


Our main areas of work are crisis intervention, advocacy and sensitisation, and capacity building. We run a helpline for emergency calls and provides pro bono legal aid and advice, short-term shelter, medical support (including mental health support) and referrals to service providers to members of the LGBTQIA+ community, particularly persons from vulnerable and marginalised backgrounds.

our story

Raahi: A Journey Towards Dignity is a Karnataka-based organisation concentrating our efforts in two districts, namely Bengaluru Urban and Bengaluru Rural. Our work caters to the needs of persons marginalised on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation, with special focus on persons assigned female gender at birth. 


Raahi is a public charitable non-profit trust that was co-founded on 13th August, 2018 by nine people from a range of socio-political backgrounds who shared the belief that supporting persons from marginalised sexualities and gender identities in times of crisis ought to be carried out in a streamlined and systematic manner. Raahi is also a product of years of collective and collaborative politics, action and strategic intervention developed by countless individuals and groups who worked tirelessly to sustain the gender and sexuality movement in India.

Upcoming Events

What We Do

Crisis Intervention

Our main area of work is providing pro bono support to trans men, partners of trans men, lesbian, bisexual and queer women, gender non-conforming and non-binary persons, and persons with intersex vairations, facing crisis. We understand that a crisis is any situation or circumstance that makes a person feel marginalised, threatened or vulnerable. Hence, our interventions are needs-based and can include legal aid and advice, mental health support, short-term shelter, referrals for medical support, and assistance with legally affirming one’s gender identity.

Helpline for Emergency Calls

Pro bono legal aid and advice

Short-term shelter

Referrals to queer affirmative medical support 


Raahi is invested in sustained advocacy and sensitisation of government personnel and departments through regular meetings, engagement and networking. We work with the BBMP, DWCD, hospitals, educational institutions and the police, among others, to put forward the needs and experiences of the communities we support. We also help non-government agencies and entities through trainings and consultations related to LGBTQIA+ issues.

Meetings & trainings police, government departments, and public authorities

Consultations & trainings with other organisations and CBO's

Meetings with hospitals and mental health professionals


We work towards making information about changing laws, policies and schemes pertaining to the LGBTQIA+ community easily available in multiple languages through trainings, workshops, consultations and publications. Our capacity building work is aimed at sharing essential information and tools that can equip community members to handle crises independently, stay up to date on changing legal protections and as an opportunity for us to stay connected with the community.

Legal awareness workshops

Community workshops on gender, sexuality and other relevant issues

Community trainings on emerging needs

Meet The Team


Astha Kalarikkal 
( Suchithra KK )


Executive Director

Astha Kalarikkal is a co-founding member and the current Executive Director of Raahi, Bangalore. Her areas of work are gender and sexuality, crisis intervention andcommunity theatre.


She has a flair for languages, and supports various community-based organisations in Bangalore and Kerala with English and Malayalam translation and transcription. She has worked with other sexuality and gender movements in Kerala.


Sathyakala KK


 Finance Manager

Sathyakala K K is a Graduate in B.Sc. and completed her MA Sociology from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala. She also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Computer Application.

She has been working with the LGBTQI+ Community in various capacities with various different groups since 2010. She has a passion for theatre and is an experienced performer. She is also a co-founding member and the current Finance Manager of Raahi, Bangalore.


Nathaan Madhavi


 Program Manager

Nathaan M completed his Post Graduation Diploma in Journalism and Communication from Kerala Media Academy (Formerly Kerala Press Academy) Kochi.


He has 5 years’ experience as a freelance designer and content writer. He has worked at several media channels including Kerala Vision, The Editor and Suprabhaatham Daily, as a reporter and an editor. Nathaan is currently working as a Program Manager at Raahi, Bangalore. He was also PR/Social media manager/Designer at Sahayatrika, Thrissur, Kerala, and he is currently a board member of Sahayatrika


Durka Devi P


        Assistant Program Manager              

Durka Devi P has completed her B.Com (Computer Application) from Ayyan Thiruvalluvar College of Arts and Science, Coimbatore. She is experienced in data entry, office administration and management, network marketing and telemarketing. She is invested in crisis intervention and management. Durka is currently Raahi's Assistant program manager.

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Ahana Mekhal


Project Consultant

Ahana Mekhal has been part of Kerala’s queer movement since she was a teenager. She worked with Sahayatrika, a pioneering organization for AFAB queer and trans people in Kerala, from 2016 to 2023. She has played a major role in several movement initiatives including Kerala’s pride marches and the Justice for Anannyah Action Council, which was a fact-finding initiative set up to investigate trans people’s suicides in Kerala. Currently, she is working at Raahi as a Project Consultant.


Advik Manikandan


Program Associate

Advik Manikandan is a dynamic professional with a diverse background and a wealth of experience. His expertise spans across different sectors due to his work experience in various industries. Beyond his professional endeavours, he is also a talented athlete, dancer, and tally expert. In his leisure time, he finds joy in music, gaming, and cinema. Currently, Advik lends his expertise as a Program Associate at Raahi in Bangalore.

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Sanju S


Program Associate

Sanju S has three years of experience in the hotel industry and eight years of experience in the tailoring industry. Additionally, he has worked for five months at the Samara Organization in Bangalore (CBO). He is interested in cricket and carrom, and his hobbies include walking and listening to music. Currently, he is working at Raahi.

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Vaishnavi P


Administrative Assistant

Vaishnavi P is a skilled professional with two years of experience as an outreach worker in a CBO. She has gained extensive expertise in community outreach during her tenure. In addition to her work, Vaishnavi has a passion for sports and photography. She enjoys playing badminton in her free time and is also an avid photographer. Vaishnavi currently works as an Administrative Assistant at Raahi.


Helpline - 9739780319 
Monday to Friday 11 AM - 6 PM

Mail -

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