Supreme Court asks for Centre’s report on issue of protecting transgenders from sexual offenses

New Delhi (ILNS): The Supreme Court today issued a notice on a plea seeking equal protection for transgenders against sexual offenses. The bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justice AS Bopanna, and V Ramasubramanian has sought detailed reports from the Centre on the issue.

The petition filed by the advocate Reepak Kansal, has sought

“for a direction to the Union of India to make the appropriate modification of sections of the Indian Penal Code dealing with sexual assaults against transgender/ transsexuals and or eunuchs.”

The bench has also asked Senior Counsel Vikas Gupta appearing for the petitioner to submit a list of issues on which the Supreme Court had laid down guidelines citing examples of the Vishakha guidelines before the Court.

The UOI should adopt and implement the Universal Declaration of human rights to protect the fundamental rights of the third gender by giving them equal protection before the law, the petition, filed by Reepak Kansal stated.

The petitioner has challenged the constitutional validity of various clauses and Sub-sections of Section 354-A (Sexual harassment and punishment for sexual harassment) of the IPC.

The petitioner has further submitted that

“Indian laws are for men and women and therefore, keeping in view and considering transgender neither men nor women, they generally could not get justice from the authorities due to lack of a law. The third gender, are being deprived of many of the rights and privileges which other persons enjoy as citizens of this country.”

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The petitioner has further submitted that the state cannot discriminate against them on the ground of gender, thus violating Articles 14 to 16 and 21 of the constitution of India.

-India Legal Bureau