The Gauhati High Court on Thursday demanded the state’s answer to its health and welfare initiatives for transgender people (Swati Bidhan Baruah v. the State of Assam). The affidavits must contain details of the steps taken or proposed to be taken under Section 15 (measures in respect to transgender persons) of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019, according to a bench of Justices Malasri Nandi and N Kotiswar Singh. The Court clarified that the State would be the proper government for all of the measures outlined, with the exception of those that are implicitly or explicitly barred from its jurisdiction.
The Court also called attention to Section 8 of the Act, which holds the appropriate government responsible for facilitating transgender people’s full and effective involvement in society. It further states that the government must draught welfare policies to protect transgender people’s rights and interests, as well as to make it easier for them to access benefit programs.
It was emphasized that, if any health precautions are adopted, it is the government’s responsibility to ensure that transgender people have access to the same services. The Division Bench further warned the State that fees could be imposed if the affidavits were not filed on time. The case was rescheduled for December 13 under these circumstances.