I convey my best wishes to everyone on the occasion of the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s judgement on gender minorities (Thirunangais, Thirunambis, Kothis, Hijras, Jogammas, Shivasaktis, Transsexuals, Kinnars and others) as well as for the Transgender Day.
On 15th April 2014, the Supreme Court had delivered an important verdict that firmly foregrounded the reality of gender politics that had remained hidden so far. The court had ruled that the Thirunangais (or Hijras) and Thirunambis (or FtoMs) in India will be recognised as a third gender*, as distinct from female/male. It had also ordered that they be included in the list of backward communities and that the central and state governments should immediately ensure that they can access all the basic rights that are guaranteed under the constitution. We are now planning to celebrate the first anniversary of this judgement on 15 April 2015, and to convey our thanks for this positive judgement. This celebration, which is a festival for Thirunangais and Thirunambis, is a recognition and validation of all Gender Minorities.
On this day, I request all our activists to join in analysing the steps taken so far, and the steps that need to be taken in the future, in accordance with the Supreme Court judgement. I also request them to help in formulating our demands and carrying forward the struggle to access our rights. We need to carefully go through the 130-page judgement and identify which parts are acceptable and which parts are not. In this context, we also need to make ourselves aware of the steps taken by the Tamilnadu government so far.
In the coming years, having obtained our basic rights, we should succeed in all spheres of life, including education and employment, and show the world that we are no less than anyone else.
However, the Supreme Court’s judgement on IPC 377 is against the Thirunangai community and we need to struggle to change this.
I would like to convey my best wishes to everyone on this Transgender Day and the anniversary of the verdict on Gender Minorities that our future will be bright and full of cheer.
* Editor’s note: NALSA recognises the right of transgender people to identify as the third gender as well as within the binary (man/woman) framework.
** Translated by Niruj.
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