Transgender in India : Boon or Harm

    “If I wait for someone else to validate my existence, it will mean that I’m shortchanging myself.” -Zanele Muholi.  Gender identity of transgender has been a common measure to determine personality to eligibility of any person down the time. People have been part of the scale that separates them on the basis of their birth as a human and have been on that since the beginning, but has it all been a good white feather to walk on or room of thorns to enter. Questions about credibility of the same scale has always been in question and their have been instances of discrimination, where is that taking us and where does world look upon us after such oriented views upon gender identity is to be looked upon.

    Transgender a Profile

    Blessed human beings with inadequate recognition and discriminated against on the basis of same gender distinct identity are transgender. Thriving for glory and recognition, demand for basic human rights, proper living condition, validating life and support every now and then and working for society or in need of something from society they have indeed paved and played part in their life to emphasize more on their individual as well as society needs, they have been forefront of any revolution but their own humanitarian ground needs and deeds.

    Issue of Identity

    One of the most prominent issue faced by the community of transgender is that their identity is harnessing harm to them, they have been victim for a long time of the society so prompt in discrimination upon different grounds and have been validated part of society. Problem with people is nothing but for a long time there have been 2 genders to be common and recognized ones and have been the dominant part of society, to recognize other gender with similar attitude have been problematic for a large section of society. They have been quite treated as villains of modesty, dangerous, and THE OTHER PEOPLE for quite a while. This identity crisis is hurting nothing but their presence, but their experience is so brutal that their next birth won’t happen out of mere fear of getting treated in a similar fashion, they have been identified as good boon in harmony situations and bad omen to society at same time.

    Present Scenario

    In current times transgender have been involved in :

    Begging to get basic necessities of their life, involved as sex workers to be able to survive this unwilling society, have been seen doing business and community awareness programme. They have been determined to change their position and situation in the world today but alone it has been a long fight, they would be having a big target to achieve and make a living with basic livelihood and basic rights to make out a harmonious life. To make their ends meet they have been harnessing multiple problems alongside struggling with poverty, right violation, respected life.

    Economic situation

    Economic situation is different for different groups in india whether be general/SC/ST but importance of job lies in providing opportunity, job vacancies provided that opportunity, mere government jobs won’t satisfy needs of entire community, Private as well as government reservation for jobs are necessary to hold down economic job requirements and make them capable out of situation arising and standing forefront to fight it out.

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    Social Situation

    Transgender are considered children of god, people of some selective religions take them as a boon and treat them as validated respect, but everywhere they just strive for a good life like other genders and leading policies that others receive. People also differ on social culture to be different and adaptive to different behaviour. All that is required by them is social acceptance and validation from people, equal behaviour, acceptance of their physicality, mentality, profession.

    People are unprofessional in handling scenarios linked with sexual identity and profession. But rightfully in Constitution Of India by constituent assembly, Fundamental Rights are available to all citizen of India irrespective of gender, sex, caste, religion, race and on similar grounds there is discrimination with the transgender people and linking them to different grounds. On the sole basis of human rights if this gets them on the wrong foot, it is constitutionally their right and deserving that they should get. In long history there have been multiple instances where they were deprived on the same humanitarian grounds, if there is fear among people due to fear arising out of fundamental rights as well but due to mental cruel elements and mentally discriminating by looks, children, profession is being painful to trans people in a long time.

    What is done

    Being transgender is not a crime. Expressing feelings of who you really are should never be a crime in any situation, but with this expression of freedom comes problems that are still expecting answers, results, from the government.

    • Transgenders are suffering the war of gender domination either male of uttermost value or female earning surplus.
    • Trans people are provided reservations in government jobs, banks, railways, but few vacancies left and provided will not suffice the needs of the entire community for a long long time.
    • Still lack of jobs and education provides them with no other option to go for prostitution, begging, working roadside, but above all looking out for rights and respect.
    • Indian Constitution grants legitimacy by providing them special status in the Constitution but still mere presence won’t satisfy their rights as human beings various policies, rules, regulations are required and Indians should be aware of the situation faced.
    • Policies are made by the government but proper implementation is still lacking. At ground level these ideas and policies are lacking support of the public and executives.

    Transgender persons face various forms of gendered violence, harassment and discrimination both at home and in public spaces.

    Judgement Linked

    On April 15, 2014, the Supreme Court of India gave a historic judgement in the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) v. Union of India[1] case, declaring transgender people to be the “third gender” in India. According to this judgement, transgender people had the right to be treated equally under the Constitution of India, they had the right to self-identification (identifying one’s gender as male, female, or third gender), and, most importantly, they were to be recognized as socially and economically backward classes, thereby making them eligible for reservations in jobs and educational institutions.

    The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill was passed in the Lower House in August, 2019. Even though the Act[2] does away with some controversial provisions that existed in the 2018 bill, including criminalizing of begging, severe criticism abounds because it does not give transgender people the right to self-identify their gender without having had sex reassignment surgery.

    As per the legislation, the District Magistrate and the screening-committee at the district level will assign a gender certificate to an individual who has undergone a sex reassignment surgery. If one has not undergone sex reassignment surgery, one can only be identified as transgender, not as male or female. Transgender people believe this is coercing them into surgery whereas the demand for free or low-cost sex reassignment surgery has also not been met.

    In addition to that, the provision for punishment for serious crimes committed against transgender people is substantially less severe than for the same crimes committed against other people. The new bill also denies reservation to transgender, intersex and gender non-conforming people, and requires them to be living with their birth families which are the site of physical and psychological violence in most cases. Even during the rituals when a transgender woman is “possessed by the goddess,” it is always important whom the goddess has possessed. If an upper-caste trans woman is possessed, then everyone bows down and there is a huge celebration where everyone comes with offerings and prays or makes a vow. This happens in gharanas that are upper-caste and, therefore, also financially way better than small gharanas of lower-caste transgender people.

    Conclusion with Solution

    Transgenders have been deprived over a marginal period of time as of now and have been looked after for so long and no solution persist so far their status is concerned, apart from that every movement stays superficial when it comes to asking real questions about the rights and dignity of transgender people. The transgender community holds internal debates and addresses issues that cause discrimination within the community is a good beginning and voices are coming out from intersections of oppressed caste and gender identities. However, a lot more needs to be done to completely integrate the two, some steps accordingly to be considered:

    • Awareness to be created so that social acceptance is carried out by people, and discrimination is aborted to take form of social stand off.
    • Public policy to be implemented at ground level should be considered first by ground level transgender people and community, because they are the one suffering and their demands are the one to be taken care of.
    • The Legislature of the country should involve trans people because framing and standing for laws are essential steps to move forward.
    • 3 organs of government (Judiciary, Executive, Legislature) should involve the community as the government can hold out important positions to them for making conditions fruitful and peaceful with better policies.
    • Private players just like trading and other businesses should join in government schemes to extend their support in employment, awareness to help out the community in achieving at a haste pace because a single scheme and organ would be redundant.
    • Apart from reservation, schemes, facilities we as humans should be accountable and welcoming to them for big support and blissful relations among us, society plays a large part in grading them success and happiness. Their rights are all dependent on moral support by the general public.

    One who wants respectful life takes charge of the family by clapping their hearts out and going to harmonious occasions to dance and make a good life for themselves.

    REFERENCES

    [1] Writ Petition (Civil) No. 604 of 2013.

    [2] The Transgenders Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019.


    BY RAJAT UPADHYAY | ISBR LAW COLLEGE BANGLORE.

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