The Madras High Court heavily reprimanded the medical professionals for employing corrective therapies to 'cure' the non-binary gender and sexual identities of the people belonging to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Community.
The Court also issued an order to the National Medical Commission and the Indian Institute of Psychiatric Society to submit the preventive measures to avoid such practises before the next hearing date. Dr Trinetra Haldar Gummaraju, a transwoman, had filed the petition and had said that 'queerphobia', prejudicial and abusive attitudes towards the LGBTQ Community were rampant in the medical profession.
Same-Sex Couple Filed For Protection From Police And Families
Further, the Court directed the Police to amend its conduct rules to ensure that the community activists and other Non-Governmental Organizations working closely with LGBTQ people do not fall victim to police harassment. Justice N Anand Venkatesh had passed this order in the petition filed by a same-sex couple seeking protection from harassment by the Police and their families.
In an unprecedented and progressive approach towards the cases relating to the Community, the Judge had reached out for counselling on LGBTQ issues before passing a slew of orders in early June this year.
The Hindustan Times reported that the report by Dr Trinetra stated that the syllabus for the undergraduate curriculum for forensic medicine described 'sodomy', 'lesbianism' and 'oral sex' as sexual offences, and cross-dressing as 'sexual perversion'.
The Court said that such study material reflected queerphobia and added that it was essential for the medical fraternity to be 'non-judgemental and free of moral and personal prejudices about their patient's identity on the gender spectrum, or their sexuality'.
Treatment Should Not Be To Cure Gender,Sexual Identity
The Court said that the knowledge of a patient's gender identity and sexuality might be of interest to a doctor, physician or a mental health expert if it's pertinent in cracking the course of the treatment. However, the Court further added that the treatment could not be the one that claims to cure gender or sexual identity.
The Court has also confronted the media and directed them to stop their insensitive commentary, ridiculing and high sensationalizing the lives of the LGBTQ Community. The next hearing of the case is scheduled for October 4.