Supreme Court seeks govt responses on transgender reservations

Supreme Court seeks govt responses on transgender reservations


On Friday, 25th August 2023, the Supreme Court took a significant step by issuing a notice to the Union government, as well as all states and Union Territories (UTs), soliciting their responses in connection with a plea advocating for reservations for transgender individuals in state employment opportunities across India.

The notice was issued by a bench led by Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud in response to a plea that seeks a declaration asserting the entitlement of transgender persons, at large, to reservations within state government jobs under the provisions of Articles 14, 19, and 21, which are delineated as Fundamental Rights within Part-III of the Indian constitution.

The individual behind the plea is Subi KC, a transgender person, who also urged the CJI bench to direct the formulation and implementation of a reservation policy in favour of transgender persons within the sphere of public employment.

Subi KC’s plea references several studies that underscore the socially, economically, and educationally disadvantaged status of the transgender community, characterised by distressing conditions. The petitioner also contends that swift action is necessary to address these challenges by establishing and executing provisions for reservations.

The petition further alludes to the landmark 2014 Supreme Court case of NALSA vs. Union of India, which paved the way for acknowledging transgender rights and directed the state to classify transgender individuals as socially and economically disadvantaged, thus enabling the extension of reservations to them.

The plea emphasises that the verdict of the aforementioned case is legally binding in accordance with Article 141 of the Indian constitution. Following this judgement, the Supreme Court mandated the state to institute reservation provisions for the Transgender Group of Persons (TGP).

The plea additionally presents a report from the National Aids Control Organisation (NACO), which collaborates with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). This report underscores the inadequate provision of training and skill development programs for transgender individuals, which has led to a stark absence of employment opportunities for them.

According to the petitioner, although the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019 confers various rights upon TGP, it does not extend to providing them with reservations in education or employment.

Furthermore, the petitioner highlights the submission of multiple writ petitions before various high courts advocating for the implementation of reservations in public employment. Despite these efforts, no tangible measures have been initiated to ensure reservations for the Transgender Group of Persons.


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