The Kerala High Court on Thursday observed that a person cannot be denied legitimate rights merely because he/she is a transgender.
Justice Devan Ramachandran made the observation while considering a plea filed by a transwoman, challenging a Section of the National Cadet Corps Act, 1948 which excludes the transgender community from enrolment with the National Cadet Corps.
The Central government counsel submitted that the petitioner cannot be included in the enrollment process for NCC unit of the University College, Thiruvananthapuram, because she is a transgender, though assigning herself the identity of a woman.
“Prima facie, I cannot accede to the afore submission of the learned Central government counsel without further enquiry into the matter since, going by the transgender policy, as also the applicable statutes, a person cannot be denied legitimate rights merely because he/she is a transgender, particularly when such person has assigned to himself/herself a particular gender,” the court said.
When the central government counsel sought further time to file a statement on record, the court adjourned the matter to November 30.
In an interim order, the court also directed the NCC Unit of the University College to keep the seat vacant till then.
In the plea, the petitioner who is a student at the University College, Thiruvananthapuram, has challenged her exclusion from the NCC as arbitrary.
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