Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Tuesday directed the state government to submit its draft policy regarding transgenders to the court.
The direction came during the hearing of a PIL seeking shelters and reservations for transgenders, after the state counsel Hashim Hussain informed the court that draft policy was under review and has been sent to Law department.
A division bench comprising Justice Mohammad Yaqoob Mir and Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey directed the state counsel to file the draft policy before this court after it was finalized.
Meanwhile petitioner Aijaz Ahmed Bund pleaded before the court that the draft policy framed was not consistent with the directions passed by Supreme Court and pleaded for opportunity to submit his objections.
He said that as per the judgment passed by the Supreme Court in a petition titled National Legal Services Authority Vs union of India, the transgenders have sought court directions to the government for implementation of the said judgment in J&K with a plea that clear directions of the apex court with respect to rights of transgenders be implemented. “However, the state has been unable to make headway in this direction,” he said.
The court asked Bund to file his objections and also submit a copy to Law department.
The PIL filed in 2017 states that the government must acknowledge transgenders as marginalised and vulnerable section of society and introduce reservations in government jobs and educational institutions. It also sought monthly welfare fund for them.
“The social and economic problems faced by transgenders are known to everyone and the way they are being left out by the families and the society at large is a narrative which needs to be changed. The primary aspect is that we are all human beings and they deserve the same rights as anyone else,” said one of the petitioners.
The petitioners sought construction of shelter homes for the transgenders as most of them are disowned by their families. They also pleaded for counselling centres besides welfare boards and police stations for the transgender community for building strong civil society support to curb harassment against them.