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The town of Trilochanpur elected Nazrul Islam Ritu in a landslide victory, making her the first transgender mayor in Bangladesh.

The 45-year-old said her election is an example of the “glass ceiling” finally breaking.

According to Al Jazeera, Ritu, who uses both male and female pronouns, said: “The glass ceiling is breaking. It is a good sign.

“The victory means they really love me and they have embraced me as their own.

“I will dedicate my life to public service.”

Ritu added that her win shows an increasing amount of acceptance for the “Hijra” community – those who are born male but do not identify with the gender binary of being a man or a woman.

The newly-elected mayor was born into a large Muslim family but had to flee Trilochanpur, her hometown, as a child.

After finding a home in a commune of transgender people in Dhaka, she ended up returning to the town where she became a popular figure thanks to her work with the community – which included donations to local Hindu temples and helping to build two mosques.

Ritu said that one of her main goals will be to “eradicate corruption and uproot the drug menace” in Trilochanpur.

Nurul Hossain, a voter in the constituency, added: “I’m sure she can fulfil the promises she made to us because she has always been a philanthropist, helping people.”

With a reported total of 9,557 votes – more than double the number of the second place candidate – she will serve as the town’s mayor.

“She won it fair and square,” local government administrator Jerin said. “There were no reports of violence during the election, unlike some other towns.”

Almost a decade ago in 2013, Bangladesh gave the country’s estimated 1.5 million transgender people the right to be identified as a separate gender in the country.

Five years later, they were allowed to register as a “third gender” when signing up to vote.