DMK MP Tiruchi Siva tells Manoj C G about the features of the Bill and what prompted him to move it.
Your Bill was passed in Rajya Sabha. How do you feel?
I am very happy and excited. I have seen them, how they are being discriminated against and the way they are abused. I thought the only remedy was by way of legislation…
Did you expect this kind of support in the House?
The support was more than expected. I got support from all quarters. I didn’t expect this much. Event the ruling party joined the voice vote.
What prompted you to bring this Bill. Have you had an opportunity to interact with transgenders?
I had interacted with them before bringing the Bill. But after it was moved so many associations and self-help groups got in touch with me. I got to know how they have suffered. This is a huge step forward in ending the centuries-long discrimination.
I believe a private member bill has been passed after four decades?
After 45 years a private member bill has been passed. Only 14 private member bills have been passed by Parliament so far, all before 1970. In the last three years Britain has passed 17 bills. In Canada, around 229 bills have been passed so far.
What are the features of your Bill and what is the next stage now?
My Bill addresses the issues faced by transgender persons. It provides for setting up of a national commission with statutory powers and similar commissions at the state level too. The Bill has 58 clauses and each of it deals with various aspects of a transgender person’s life. The next stage is a technical matter. It will now go to the Lok Sabha.