Centre Drafts Bill For Protection of Transgender Rights
The draft bill suggests a jail term for up to 2 years for harassing a transgender.
The Ministry of Social Justice has drafted a Bill that could ensure up to two years of imprisonment if a person physically, sexually, emotionally or even economically abuses a transgender.
According to The Indian Express report, the ministry on 23 March, circulated a draft Cabinet note on the ‘Rights of Transgender Persons Bill, 2016’ to all ministries for their feedback and suggestions. The Bill suggests a jail-term ranging from six months to two years, along with a fine for people found guilty of forcing transgenders to beg, denying them public access, forcing them to leave their house or village and causing them physical or mental injury.
Recognition to the Transgender Community
The Bill, in its current draft, says a transgender must be recognised as one after he/she receives a certificate issued by District Magistrate. The will be provided rights and entitlements including reservation in jobs and education under the OBC quota if they do not already belong to the SC/ST community.
The draft law also proposes a National Council of Transgender Persons to look and make schemes to provide scholarships, textbooks and hostel accommodations to the transgender community. It also calls for necessary amendments in the IPC to include cases of sexual offences against a transgender.
The legislation is based on private members bill moved in Rajya Sabha by Tiruchi Siva. It was passed in the house on 24 April 2015. The government has assured the House to bring the bill in Lok Sabha after ‘correcting infirmities’ in the bill.
The Ministry of Social Justice and Equality has finally moved a cabinet note after having several rounds of consultations. It has asked other ministries to respond with feedbacks in two weeks, after which, the bill will be taken to cabinet for approval. There are 6 lakh people in India belonging to the transgender community, according to the 2011 census.
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