The transgender community in the state has achieved another feat in their fight for equal rights and equal treatment in society. Henceforth, they will get a separate ward for treatment at all hospitals runs by Health and Family Welfare and Medical Education department across the state.
So far, they have obtained ration cards, voter IDs, passports and driving licenses. Last week, the state government passed an order stating that all government hospitals must reserve a two-bed ward for the treatment of the transgender community.
Further, the government has also relaxed the mandatory condition of producing a castration certificate to avail the benefits provided by the state government. Instead, the community can submit an affidavit along with a membership reference from either Sangama or the Karnataka Sexual Minorities Federation (KSMF) which are working for the uplift of the transgender community in the state.
The order on separate wards has been hailed by transgender activists Akkai Padmashali and Sonika who have been fighting for the cause for the last eight months. Akkai said, "We welcome this decision and thank the government. Sonika and I requested the government through Principal Secretary Madan Gopal about eight months ago to provide a separate ward for the treatment of our community people and finally the government has realised the importance of our demand and ordered in our favour."
Akkai Padmashali and Sonika underwent castration operation in M S Ramaiah eight months ago, and were happy over the treatment and care given to them. However, realising that not all members of the transgender community could afford the luxury of treatment in private hospitals, the activists have been pressing for reservation of separate wards for their treatment.
"At a time when some of the members of our community ailing on the streets, the order comes as a ray of hope. There have been many patients ailing with tuberculosis, HIV and other ailments. Forget about getting fair treatment, sometimes doctors too hesitate to touch and treat us. This being the situation, a kind gesture by the government would really help us in the long run and safeguard us from various ailments," Akkai said.
Reproduced from Bangalore Mirror
Picture Source: Bangalore Mirror