Transgenders who desire to declare their sex and apply for a certificate of identity will no longer need to go through a medical examination, according to the latest draft rules issued by the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment on Monday under the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2020.
First issued as a draft in July, the rules were condemned by the LGBTQ community inviting several suggestions and objections for "taking away" their dignity by making it compulsory for the District Magistrate to verify and certify the gender of the person.
According to The Indian Express report, the new rules that were notified on September 25, state that the District Magistrate will "subject to the correctness of the applicant's particulars, get the application processed based on the affidavit submitted declaring the gender identity of any person, without any medical or physical examination, and thereafter, issue an identification number to the applicant, which may be quoted as proof of application."
Till the system starts operating online, the application to declare the gender of a person has to be made before the District Magistrate physically. Parents will also be allowed to apply for an application on behalf of their children.
Transgender people who have already recorded their change in gender be it male, female or transgender before the rules were issued do not need to submit an official application for the certificate of identity. According to the latest rules, state governments have been advised to constitute welfare boards for the transgender community in order to preserve their rights and interests
The new rules provide access to various schemes and welfare measures that has been constituted by the Centre.
A review has also been called by them for all the existing social security, educational, health, welfare schemes, vocational training and self-employment activities to enable the transgender people to participate.
The state governments have been directed to take steps to stop discrimination towards transgender people in any government or private organization, or private and public educational institution under their vicinity, "and ensure equitable access to social and public places, including burial grounds."
The Centre also stated that the transgender-sensitive infrastructure such as separate wards in hospitals and washrooms need to be constructed within two years after the Rules have been released.
It has also directed all the state government to come up with a Transgender Protection Cell under the charge of the DGP of the state and District Magistrates to keep an eye on the wrongdoings against the transgender community and to confirm timely registration, investigation and prosecution.