Kerala makes the first move, puts in laws for transgender equality
A new policy started in Kerala proved it one more time that the state is most progressive. It became the first state in India to draft out a transgender policy, so that the members of this community can have equal rights in society. It has been years since people from the transgender community have been denied of their constitutional rights, and it was required that an enforceable set of laws got introduced in favour of the same. There are about 25000 transgenders (TGs) in the state, who have lived through generations of oppression and even been forced into sex- trade, due to lack of options and opportunities.
Kerala Social Justice Board recommended the setting up of a TG Justice Board and District TG Justice committees, with the state minister as the chairperson for overseeing the effective implementation of fundamental rights of the people. Earlier last month, Prithika Yashini of Kerala got selected as India’s first transgender cop.
This decision was not an overnight revolution. An International Conference on Gender Equality was held Kovalam in Trivandurum, where Governor Justice P. Sathsivam introduced the policy framework. As LI reported, it was preceded by an extensive survey throughout the state, which covered the following aspects of an individual’s life:
- Basic Details;
2. Awareness about one’s body;
3. Civil Rights;
5. Access to health services;
6. Ability to live with dignity;
7.Freedom from Violence
This personalized survey has helped understand the personal violation experienced by every person in a very nuanced manner. Post acceptance of the recommendations, the TG community will be assured equal access to development opportunities (both economic and social), resources for self-growth and equal benefits.
It is targeted at meeting the needs of all- TG men, women and intersex people. It also bestows the right of self-determination of sexuality/ gender on people, which is the greatest step in achieving human rights for all.
A mid-term evaluation procedure has also been put in place for testing the effectiveness of the new policy, Indian express reported. They are defying the state established section 377 that criminalizes ‘unnatural offences’. State governments have the right to choose or defy these laws, as per the needs of their population. And Kerala has taken a great step in setting an example for other states.