Inheritance rights, anti-discrimination cell, medical boards: NHRC’s recommendations for welfare of transgender people
New Delhi, (PTI) The NHRC has in an advisory to the Centre and state authorities given a slew of recommendations for the welfare of transgender people including a provision for multi-purpose identity cards to easily access government schemes and setting up “anti-discrimination cells” and medical boards to assist them at the district level.
The rights panel in a statement on Tuesday said that it has also recommended that a “single trans child” of a deceased government employee or pensioner may be treated as an unmarried daughter for the family pension and other benefits, and transgender persons should be allowed to inherit ancestral agricultural land.
The National Human Rights Commission has issued the advisory to the Centre and state governments and UT administrations to ensure the welfare of transgender persons, with the rights panel observing that one of the primary concerns faced by them is that despite legal advancements, they continue to “grapple with discrimination”.
The advisory has been prepared by it after wide discussions with various stakeholders and its Core Group members on LGBTI issues, the statement said.
Transgender persons should be allowed to inherit ancestral agricultural land; multi-purpose identity cards may be provided to the transgender to help them access government schemes and other benefits, are several other recommendations have also been made in the advisory.
The right panel has also recommended including ‘Third Gender’ as an identity category of the transgender community seeking jobs in various civil services and to enable them to apply and appear in entrance examinations.
Medical boards at the district level should be set up to assist transgender persons in consultation, besides provisions in every district civil hospital for consultation, treatment and counselling for sex reassignment surgery; and a provision for a suitable amount be made for those who want to opt for a sex change or free sex reassignment surgery in government hospitals, it says.
The NHRC, in a letter to the secretaries in the Department of Social Justice & Empowerment and Ministry of Corporate Affairs, chief secretaries of states and administrators of Union Territories, has asked for the “implementation of its recommendations in letter and spirit, and sought action taken report within two months,” the statement said.
The rights of transgender persons have gained recognition and legal validity through the enactment of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019, which aims to safeguard and uphold their rights, it said.
“In the advisory, the Commission has observed that one of the primary concerns faced by transgender persons in the country is that despite the legal advancements, they continue to grapple with discrimination at various places like employment disparities, limited access to healthcare, and exclusion from social circles,” it added.
The advisory has focused on six key areas for action by the Centre, states and UT administrations to ensure transgender persons get access to education, healthcare, employment, inclusivity, welfare, and grievance redressal.
“Single trans child of a deceased government employee or pensioner, may be treated as an unmarried daughter for the family pension and other benefits,” reads one of the recommendations of the rights panel made in its advisory.
A policy should be formulated to address the issues of violence, discrimination and harassment at educational institutions by protecting gender non-conforming students from bullying, harassment or other forms of violence, the NHRC has also said in its advisory.
An “anti-discrimination cell” must be set up at the district level for transgender persons, and authorities must ensure the setting up of a “monitoring committee” at educational institutions to address the issues of prejudices, discrimination, sexual abuse and other violence against them, it said.
Besides, wide publicity is to be given to the National Career Service Portal among the transgender community, it added.
Establishing a ‘Transgender Protection Cell’ under the director general of police or his or her nominee in the state to monitor cases of offences against transgender persons, and taking adequate steps to deal with the complaint of sexual harassment of transgender persons are other recommendations.
“Transgender students should not be discriminated against in higher studies, and suitable provision for providing financial assistance to them for pursuing degree/ diploma/PG courses may be ensured. Provision of scholarship and free education for Transgender students also be formulated,” the advisory says. PTI KND RT RT
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