February 5, 2021 1:13:53 am
The government is working on an umbrella scheme to address issues of access to health, education, welfare, skill upgradation, shelter, and economic support and livelihood for the transgender community, Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment, Rattan Lal Kataria on Thursday informed Parliament.
Replying to a question raised by Anumula Revanth Reddy — Lok Sabha member from Telangana’s Malkajgiri — on government plans to allocate special funds for generating livelihood opportunities for the community and also about the data on number of transgenders currently working in public services, the minister said that the government had enacted the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019 for the welfare of the community.
Kataria said that the Act deals with the issue of grant of identity certificates and lays down a streamlined procedure for it, besides making provisions for non-discrimination, equal opportunities in employment, schemes on education, social security and accessible healthcare for the community. He said a national portal, launched by the ministry in November last year, enabled the transgender community to apply for identity certificates from the District Magistrate concerned, and the portal has received 259 applications so far.
Kataria said the government has constituted a National Council for Transgender Persons – a platform for the representatives of the community — to act as an apex body to address the community’s concerns. The Council is headed by the Minister of Social justice and Empowerment and draws participation from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Home Affairs, Housing and Urban Affairs, Education, Rural Development, Labour and Employment, Legal Affairs, Niti Aayog, etc.
The minister said the government has provided for one-time assistance of Rs 1,500 for each member of the community through the NCBCFDC during the pandemic, and 5,711 people have benefited from direct transfers. Ration kits were distributed through the district administration and medical camps were also organised in eight states which were attended by 1,005 people, he said.
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