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Court pulls up Centre, States for silence on transsexual status

in INDIA, 25/08/2013

The Supreme Court has pulled up the Centre and States for not filing their response and explaining their stand on declaring transgenders citizens under a third category to give them equal protection and rights.

Acting on a petition from the National Legal Services Authority (Nalsa), a Bench of Justices K.S. Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra issued notice to the Centre and the Chief Secretaries of all States in October last. But they have not yet filed their reply. On Wednesday, the Bench gave them the last opportunity, and posted further hearing to September 6.

Nalsa sought a direction to include transsexuals as a third category for purposes of providing them election cards, passports, driving licences, identification cards, ration cards and admission to educational institutions.

The petition said: “The Citizenship Act of India uses the expression ‘person’ without reference to sex. Transgenders being citizens of India ought to be entitled to vote and to contest elections as they are natural persons.”

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