The NALSA judgement of Supreme Court provided the right for self-determination of gender; however, its spirit got diluted with the passage of Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act 2019. Analyze.

A ‘transgender’ is a person who’s sex doesn’t match the sex assigned at birth. The SC had taken an expansive meaning on gender/sex & ensured effective protection for the rights of the transgender community. However, many groups such as “All for one”, Transgender Concern, etc opine that the 2019 Act has infringed on their protection as guaranteed by the courts.

Features of the Act:

  • It establishes a transgender protection rights council to be headed by MoSJE.
  • It would have nominated members from the transgender community.
  • Looks into laws, specific complaints & welfare of transgender at large.

Issues with the Act:

  • Gender definition is not suited to the liberal interpretation of the Supreme Court.
  • Member’s term is not fixed.
  • Not same status as SC/ST in the NCST/NCSC.
  • No reservations given to the transgender yet.
  • Transgender members are not in the majority.

Way Forward:

The constitution treats all equally hence parochial, paternalistic & suspicious attitude towards transgender needs to be changed for their upliftment.

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