Activists demand changes in bill on transgenders

Activists demand changes in bill on transgenders

Activists demand changes in bill on transgenders

Transgender rights activists have demanded wide-ranging revision in the Transgender (Protection of Rights) Bill 2016, which has been passed by the Lok Sabha and is pending in the Rajya Sabha.

Actvists have written to the prime minister for the inclusion of such provisions, which recognise the self-identification process and address the issue of violence against transgenders by family, state and others in a comprehensive manner.

Addressing a press conference on Monday, the activists  also demanded reservations in education and jobs. 

“The new bill is not a step forward from the earlier bill, the Rights of Transgender Persons Bill, 2015,” they said.

Deletion of provisions

Stating that many definitions and provisions of the earlier bill have been deleted, rights activists demanded that the new bill be changed to make it consonant with the Supreme Court Judgement of April 2014.

Definition of transgender

Nish Gulur, trans-woman activist and advocacy officer of Sangama, a Bengaluru-based transgender rights organisation said, “The bill in its present form does not recognise the self-identification process and makes a provision for a district screening committee led by a district magistrate to certify a person’s third-gender identity and this was unacceptable.”

She also opposed the definition of transgender. She said that the definition is not in line with the Supreme Court judgement.

“Moreover the usage of the phrases like ‘transgender person’ means a person who is— neither wholly female nor wholly male; or a combination of female or male; or neither female nor male’ is inappropriate and derogatory. However inclusion of ‘inter-sex persons’ in its definition is a welcome move,” she said.B T Venkatesh, who identifies as trans man, is a former state public prosecutor for the government of Karnataka.
He said, “The key provisions on Constitutional protection, which was included in the Rights of Transgender Bill, 2015, has surprisingly been removed. And also, provisions such as equality, non-discrimination and right to life and personal liberty have not been clearly emphasised in the present Bill.”

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