Over 73,000 Transgenders Arrested For Extorting Money From Passengers In 4 Yrs, Says Railway Ministry
The railway ministry in a reply to an RTI query has said that over 73,000 transgenders have been arrested for extorting money from railway passengers in the past four years. In the last year alone, over 20,000 were arrested.
What does the data say?
Reportedly, a total of 73,837 transgenders were arrested from 2015 to January this year while they were extorting money from the passengers. Of these, a total of 13,546 were arrested in 2015, 19,800 in 2016, 18,526 in 2017 and 20,566 in 2018. As many as 1,399 transgenders were arrested in the month of January alone, said the ministry.
This data is of utmost significance as railway passengers have complained of large scale harassment by transgender people, who can often be seen on-boarding trains with the intention of taking money from the passengers. Officials said that some of the passengers have also faced verbal abuse and in worst cases, attacked physically if they refused to dole out money.
According to NDTV, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) have been regularly conducting special drives to check instances of harassment in Indian Railways.
“Policing on railways being a state subject, prevention of crime, registration of cases, their investigation and maintenance of law and order in railway premises as well as on running trains are the statutory responsibility of the state governments, which they discharge through the Government Railway Police (GRP),” said the railway ministry.
The Logical Indian take
The transgender and intersex community in India is in a peculiar position. While much has been done to include people of belonging to sexual minorities, the Indian and state governments need to go a long way before it can attain inclusivity in the truest sense of the form. Even though the country’s 2 million transgender population has been given the basic rights, most of them are subjected to trauma and are devoid of dignity — a right that every individual must enjoy.
While it is inhumane to harass railway passengers, many transgenders are either left to fend for themselves or are forced to abandon comfort for their gender choices.