Third gender voters in the union territory (UT) Puducherry demand that the next government conduct a survey to identify the number of transgender people in Puducherry. The third gender voters also want measures that will bring them into the mainstream.
According to the electoral statistics, the union territory has 116 third gender voters, including 96 voters from the Puducherry region. There are 18 third gender voters in the Ariankuppam constituency and 16 third gender voters in the Karaikal North constituency.
The president of the Sahodaran Community Oriented Health Development Society, Sheetal Nayak told The Hindu that electoral statistics regarding third gender voters is inaccurate. According to Nayak, the number of eligible transgender voters are much higher than the figure given by the election authorities.
After voting in Ariankuppam, Nayak stated that “I am sure the numbers will cross 1000 in UT if the government conducts a detailed survey.” Nayak added that when many members of the transgender community want to get a voter card but cannot provide the certificates that can prove their identity, such as a birth certificate. “Majority of us are thrown out of homes and all the certificates to show our birth must have been destroyed by now,” added Nayak.
Sheetal Nayak stated that the government could conduct a survey to discover the actual number of transgender people in the union territory. A programme that aims to accommodate the transgender community into mainstream society should also be devised.
When speaking about what pushed transgender people to the streets, Nayak stated that circumstances pushed trans people to the streets. When speaking about the same, another voter Durga Renjitha stated that the government “should at least provide free housing facility like they give for other vulnerable sections.”
According to the Election Commission, the Puducherry assembly polls reported a turnout of 78.03 percent.