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  • Permit Transgenders to utilize public toilets of their choice: Center tells states

    April 11, 2017

    Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation has issued a Circular under its Swachh Bharat Mission which says that third-gender should be allowed to use public toilet facility of their choice (men or women).

    These guidelines provide for inclusion of the third-gender under Swachh Bharat Mission. Guidelines provide that a conscious effort should be made by the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) in order to recognize them as equal citizens and users of toilets. They should be allowed to use the facility of their choice (men or women) in a community or public toilets.

    The guidelines on gender issues in sanitation also stated that there were examples from across India where those belonging to the third gender have played a significant role in taking the “message of Swachhata” to other households in their community.

    The decision of Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation is believed to be in accordance with the Supreme Court Judgement in wherein the SC has held that Hijras, Eunuchs be treated as “third-gender” for the purpose of safeguarding their rights under Part III of the Constitution and the laws made by the Parliament and State Legislature. SC further directed the Centre and State Government to take proper measures so as to provide separate public toilets for the third-gender.
     

    OUR TAKE

    Our Constitution provides for the fundamental right to equality, and tolerates no discrimination on the grounds of sex, caste, creed or religion. It also guarantees political rights and other benefits to every citizen. But the third community (transgender) continues to be boycotted. It is therefore essential that they be given equal recognition in society and their choices must be respected.


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