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Who are transgenders?

A trans person's gender identity is not the same as the sex on their original birth certificate. Transgender is a term that includes the many ways that people gender identities can be different from the sex they were assigned at birth.For example, someone whose sex is male might identify as female, or vice versa. Being transgender isn’t the same thing as being lesbian, gay, or bisexual. Gender identity, whether transgender or cisgender, is about who you are inside as male, female, both, or none of these. Being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or straight describes who you’re attracted to and who you feel yourself drawn to romantically, emotionally, and sexually. It is different from sexual orientation.In India there are a host of socio – cultural groups of transgender people like hijras/ kinnars, and other transgender identities like – shiv-shaktis, jogtas, jogappas, Aradhis, Sakhi, etc. 

LGBT is shorthand for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. The ‘T’ in LGBT refers to transgender or gender non confirming.

Gender Dysphoria:

Gender dysphoria is a term that psychologists and doctors use to describe the distress, unhappiness, and anxiety that transgender people may feel about the mismatch between their bodies and their gender identity. Such person are required to receive medical services for process involving transition.

Problems faced by transgenders in India

Transgender persons are one of the most neglected and marginalised section of Indian society, facing neglect from the family as well as the government. It is the society which is responsible for their deplorable conditions. They are often seen begging near traffic signals, inside trains and live in very poor surroundings. They are disowned by their own families and stigma like lack of education access and non-availability of employment opportunities make their conditions more pity. They were mistreated and harassed from colonial rule due to patriarchal mindset. Many trans people drop out of school/college because they suffer bullying and harassment. Most people in India argue that a trans woman can’t be considered a mother because they can’t give birth to babies.  Indian films too, instead of spreading awareness about their problems, often portrayed them just as caricatures, thus increasing social stigma and discrimination surrounding them. They barely survive,have no rights, no way to express their voices and neither do they have any kind of political support.From being mocked and treated differently, to facing unfair rejection at workplaces, to being subjected to violence and murder, India’s transgender community have had a harrowing time for ages.

There are some transgender persons who are brave enough to make their way to the mainstream, achieve their goals and prove that trans people are as capable and deserving as any other Indian, thus breaking the stereotype. It takes a lot of strength for them to come to terms with who they are. Transgender individual should never consider themselves as an inferior being. In 21st century there are many living examples who break all these barriers and become successful.  

Kartavyam’s Campaign for transgenders

Kartavyam With Trust is actively working for the welfare of the transgender’s community. We at Kartavyam regularly organize food, clothing drives.As part of this drive, ration and essential supplies are distributed to different families belonging to the transgender community. We also arrange awareness sessions for these people in order to educate these people about their rights and privilegesenacted in different legislations by the Government. KWT organizes various workshops on issues of HIV/AIDS and human rights of LGBTQ. We also arrange special classes for these people in the field of personality development, help them to enhance their communication skills to better prepare them to face the world. Thetransgender community who weren’t able to get the monetary help announced by the central government in view of the lockdown we organized special sessions to provide relief to them. We at KWT also organizes medical check-ups,medicine donation drives forwho are HIV positive or have recently undergone sex reassignment surgery.   


Changes brought for the welfare of transgenders

In 2014, the Indian Supreme Court in NALSA v. India ruled that transgender people should be recognized as a third gender and they are entitled to all fundamental rights, while also being providing to specific benefits in education and employment.Until 2014, India’s transgender community had no legal recognition.Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, author of the judgement, ordered that Transgender persons right to decide their self-identified gender should be recognized by state and federal authorities.

A Delhi High Court ruling in October 2015 laid out the intrinsic link between the right to legal gender recognition and other rights. 

Section 377: Navtej Singh Johar vs. Union of India: On 6th September 2018 a five-judge Bench unanimously struck down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. LGBT individuals are now legally allowed to engage in consensual intercourse. The Court upheld provisions in Section 377 that criminalise non-consensual acts or sexual acts performed on animals.They found that Section 377 discriminates against individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity, violating Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution, the rights to life, dignity and autonomy of personal choice under Article 21. Finally, they found that it inhibits an LGBT individual’s ability to fully realize their identity, by violating the right to freedom of expression under Article 19(1)(a).

In the year 2018, World Health Organization (WHO) declared that being transgender is not a mental disorder. While this was a progressive move for the transgender community, WHO reclassified being transgender as a ‘sexual health condition’, raising questions on the move, despite its purported benefits.

The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2019 was introduced in Lok Sabha on July 19, 2019.The bill provides right to residence, protection against discrimination, employment, education, health care. It also provides for setting up of National Council for Transgender persons (NCT)

There are various NGOs and civil societies playing an important role in upliftment of transgender community. Various transgender person like Gauri Sawant, Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, Padmani Prakash etc played an important role in the transgender’s right movement.  

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