The Bihar State Legal Services Authority (BSLSA) has launched a new scheme for the holistic welfare of transgender individuals called the Scheme for Integration of Transgender Persons and their Rehabilitation and Providing Access to Justice (SITARA), 2023.
Unveiled by Justice Chakradhari Sharan Singh, JAD-1, Patna High Court-cum-Executive Chairman of BSLSA, the scheme aimed at overseeing proper implementation of the Transgender Person (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019, and the Transgender Person (Protection of Rights) Rules, 2020.
Speaking on the occasion, Justice Singh emphasised the key principles of Integration, Rehabilitation and Access to Justice for the transgender community.
Recently, a meeting was convened with various state government departments under the leadership of Justice Singh to discuss issues related with the identification, skill development and housing of transgender persons.
Joint Secretary and In-Charge Member Secretary of BSLSA, Dhriti Jasleen Sharma, gave an overview of the scheme, along with its implementation.
Sharma further explained the benefits of the scheme for the transgender community.
The programme was presented by Neha Niharika, Assistant Registrar of BSLSA.
Reshma Prasad, a member of the National Council for Transgender Persons and founder of the NGO Dostana Safar, along with other transgender community members, shared their views and grievances during the event, emphasising on the positive impact of the SITARA Scheme.
They hailed the scheme, calling it a beacon of light during the festival of Deepawali, which signified hope and progress.
The BSLSA has officially recognised transgender persons as eligible for Free Legal Aid under Clause 19 of Bihar State Legal Services Authority Regulations, 1998, through an amendment in 2017.
The decision would solidify the commitment of the authority to uphold the rights and justice for the transgender community.
The event, which was held both in online and offline mode, witnessed participation from members of the transgender community, BSLSA officers and staff, among others.