An Unrecognised Gender Gains Recognition
The Hijra or Eunuch refers to an individual who is transsexual or transgender. This group occupies the lower end of the Indian social hierarchy. Eunuchs can be emasculated men, non-emasculated men and intersexed persons,who have the physiological qualities of both sexes. The Supreme Court’s ruling in favour of a ‘Third Gender’, on 15th April, 2014, finally recognized the Hijras as legal citizens of India with the right to vote. A population count of the transgenders was impossible due to lack of recognition. According to a report in the Times of India on 30 May, 2014, the ‘third gender’ counts for 4.9 lakhs of Indian population. The transgender activists believe that the figures are inflated, although they are elated at the official recognition of the alternate genders.
The Hijras have been denied their rights as promised in the Indian Constitution which incorporates certain articles, not followed meticulously until the Supreme Court ruling on 15 April, 2014, that they themselves could enjoy equal opportunities in education, employment etc.
The Lok Sabha has passed the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2016. It has also passed the Trafficking of persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2018. Both these Bills are pending consideration in the Rajya Sabha, though the transgender community is not happy with the above Bills.
The Hijras face a multiplicity of problems. They are denied various civic amenities and confront discriminations in the fields of education, employment and in other walks of life. It may be stated that a more sympathetic approach towards the ‘Third Gender’ can draw them out of their predicament and contribute positively towards society.
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Emasculation Ritual Among the Hijras 25 – WSU Athletics
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Transgender-The Judgment Information System,
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14. Will Now Be Included In Kolkata Police – Mens XP.com
https://www.mensxp.com/special-features/today/27900-hijras-will-now-be-included-in-kolkata-police-and-the-west-bengal-government-deserves-an-applause-for-this.html accessed on 25 December, 2018
15. Social inclusion: Bengal govt rains sops on transgenders. 25 December, 2018. http://www.hindustantimes.com/kolkata/social-inclusion-mamata-s-bengal-govt-rains-sops-on-transgenders/story-OzDLHS60pF5QL52o1owcDJ.html accessed on 25 December, 2018
16. Odisha bureaucrat breaks free, comes out as transgender. 22 December, 2018. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bhubaneswar/Odisha-bureaucrat-breaks-free-comes-out-as-transgender/articleshow/50274572.cms accessed on 25 December, 2018
17. For detail, see www.businessstandard.com, Last updated at December 20, 2018, accessed on 1 April, 2019
18. See, for detail, The Hindustan Times, New Delhi, 27 March, 2019. See also https://www.hindustantimes.com/lok-sabha-elections/lok-sabha-elections-2019-only-9-transgenders-from-gurugram-enrolled-as-voters/story-peMcDdPVP8rPHgPXp8DboN.html The Hindustan Times, New Delhi, 25 February, 2019 https://www.hindustantimes.com/lok-sabha-elections/lok-sabha-elections-2019-life-will-be-hard-if-trans-bill-is-passed-says-first-time-voter/story-ibEIaohnntYt8amT1J3wbK.html
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