Bill to protect rights of transgenders passed in LS

Bill to protect rights of transgenders passed in LS

The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill 2019 was passed by a voice vote amid noisy protests by some opposition parties over Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury not being allowed to speak on his adjournment notice. (File Photo)

A bill to provide for the protection of the rights of the transgender persons and their empowerment gets the Lok Sabha nod on Monday.

The Lok Sabha passed the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill 2019 by voice votes amid the din created by the Congress, DMK and other Opposition party members over the government's move to scrap special status granted to Jammu and Kashmir under the Constitution.

The bill, which was introduced by the government in the Lower House on July 19, not only seeks to the protect the rights of the transgenders but also provides for their social, economic and educational empowerment.

It prohibits all forms of discrimination against transgender persons, providing for the imposition of fine and handing down of jail term, which would not less than six months, to those committing crime against them or violating their rights guaranteed under the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill.

Under the provisions made in the bill, transgender persons can not be discriminated or given “unfair treatment” by any person on establishment in matters pertaining to education, employment, healthcare services.

Transgender persons will have right to reside, purchase, rent, or otherwise occupy any property. They will also have right to “self-perceived gender” identity.

To get a certificate of identity, a transgender person will have to file an application with the district magistrate.

To protect the rights of the transgender persons and ensure that measures are taken for their welfare, the bill provides for setting up of a national commission. It also stipulates for setting for commissions at the level of States and Union territories.

The bill mandates the governments to formulate welfare schemes and programmes to facilitate and support livelihood for transgender persons including their vocational training and self-employment.

Earlier while moving the bill for consideration of the House, Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Rattan Lal Kataria said, “We have brought the bill to ensure that they live a dignified life. Complaints about transgender persons facing discrimination and sexual crimes keep coming. We need to provide protection to their rights.”

According to the 2011 census, more than 4.80 lakh transgenders are there in the country, he added.

The government will now take the Bill for its consideration and passage in the Rajya Sabha.