The transgender protection bill, 2019 was introduced in Lok Sabha on July 19, 2019, by the minister of Social Justice and Empowerment and passed by Rajya Sabha on November 26, 2019. According to the bill, a transgender person is the one whose gender does not match with the gender assigned at birth. It prohibits discrimination against them in any field.
The definition of transgender also includes trans- men and women, persons with intersex variations i.e. a person who at birth shows variation in his primary sexual characteristics, persons with socio-culture identities such as kinnar and hijra and genderqueers. The bill prohibits the discrimination against a transgender person which includes unfair treatment and denial of service in respect to education, employment, housing, healthcare, right to movement, enjoying of goods etc. and provides certain rights to transgender in relation to:-
• Right to residence- Every transgender person shall have the right to the residence so it could reside anywhere and if any family is unable to take care of the transgender person, the person could be placed in a rehabilitation centre on the advice of the competent court.
• Employment– No transgender person would be discriminated against by any government or private authority in employment matters including promotion and retirement and a complaint officer should be designated in order to deal with any complaint in relation to this act.
• Education– Education institutes recognised by the government shall provide education, sports and recreation facilities for transgender people without any discrimination.
• Health care- The government shall review the medical curriculum so that they could address the health care issues of transgender people and take certain steps such as separate HIV surveillance centres and sex reassignment surgeries.
• Certificate of identity for a transgender person– The district magistrate must issue a certificate of identity, indicating the gender as transgender. A revised certificate may be obtained only if the individual undergoes surgery to change their gender.
• Welfare measure by the government- The relevant government will take measures to ensure the participation of transgender people in society and in cultural activities. It must also take certain steps for their self-employment, vocal training and create schemes for their benefits.
• National Council for Transgender persons (NCT)- This council will advise the central government as well as monitor the impact of policies with respect to transgender persons. It includes a Chairperson, Vice-Chairpersons, Secretary of Ministry of Social Justice, one representative of every ministry including Heath, Home Affair, Human resources development and other members including representatives of NITI Aayog and the Human Rights Commission.
The bill also recognized certain acts against transgender as offences such as forced or bonded labour, removal from household and villages, denial of use of public places and any kind of physical, sexual, verbal, emotional or economic abuse will lead to those offences vary between six months to two years and fine.
Transgender people are a part of our society and from ancient times, it is seen that transgender is not treated well and are often abused in society. So, it’s high time when we start considering transgender as equal as they are also humans and have the same rights as other peoples and if equal opportunities are given to them they can also make the nation proud.
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