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Delhi HC allows more time to Centre to file reply on transgender's plea regarding issuance of passport

·2 min read
Representative image
Representative image

New Delhi [India], July 27 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Tuesday granted more time to the Centre to file its reply in a petition moved by a transgender woman regarding non-issuance of a new passport with the required changes in her name and gender.

A bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh on Tuesday slated the matter for September 6 for further hearing. The court had earlier issued a notice in the matter and sought a reply from the respondents.

The petitioner, Lasya Kahli Singh, a transgender woman, had approached the court for the non-issuance of a new passport with the required changes in her name and gender in accordance with Rule 3, Sub-Rule 3 of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Rules, 2020. Advocate Sidharth Seem appeared for the petitioner.

The petition stated that it is in violation of the petitioner's fundamental rights under Articles 14, 21, and 19 (1) of the Constitution of India. The urgency in the present petition is that the petitioner has to undergo the rest of the procedures or surgeries at a clinic in Bangkok at the earliest as she is on testosterone blockers. The use of which has an adverse impact on liver and kidney functions.

It is also recommended by doctors that the petitioner undergo her sex reassignment surgery within a year of her hormone replacement therapy treatment to avoid continual adverse impacts on the kidney and the liver.

The petitioner sought direction to the regional passport office to issue a new passport with the required changes in name and gender without insisting on the production of certification from the hospital which declares the petitioner a "woman" and the insistence of a sex reassignment surgery certificate.

Insistence on sex reassignment surgery in order for an individual to identify or change their sex/gender is unnecessary and violative of the choice of the individual with respect to undergoing a surgical procedure to reflect the transition.

Despite the clear declaration of the Supreme Court, various government departments and authorities have not taken active measures to provide for legal recognition of the rights of transgender persons. The retention of provisions relating to the production of proof of having undergone surgical procedures for sex -transition stems from a basic lack of understanding of concepts surrounding gender, sex, transgender persons, the plea said.

The plea further stated that since all the documents of the petitioner, including her Aadhar Card, Voter ID as well as PAN Card have been issued with the required changes in name and gender on the basis of the affidavit, the petitioner is also entitled to be issued her new passport with the same changes made in her other documents. (ANI)

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