Bengaluru: The Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has decided to set up a transgender welfare board under the state’s social welfare department, as reported by Hindustan Times. 

It quoted an official of the state government as saying, “The Board would work for the welfare and uplift of the transgender community. Along with the state government officers, the board would also include transgender representatives and the members of the social organisations working for the welfare of the transgenders.” 

The welfare board will identify transgenders across UP, enlist them, issue identity cards, get them enrolled in educational institutions, provide them accommodation under various hostel and housing schemes of the state government and launch welfare schemes for the community, the website further noted. 

It is also interesting to note that the development comes merely weeks after the state government had granted the transgender people the right to inherit ancestral agricultural land. Also, the constitution of the board was a demand of the UP Kinnar Parishad which now stands fulfilled. The Union Government's expert committee had also directed the UP government to constitute a welfare board for transgenders.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra termed the part of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code which crimiminalises unnatural sex as irrational, indefensible and manifestly arbitrary. It also said it is violative of right to equality, in 2018.

Highlights of the judgement: 

Section 377, IPC, to the extent that it criminalises consensual sex between two adults is arbitrary, irrational and hence liable to be partially struck down.

Sexual orientation is a biological phenomenon, any discrimination on this grounds is violative of fundamental rights.

LGBT community possesses same human and fundamental rights as other citizens.

Courts must protect dignity of an individual as right to live with dignity is recognised as fundamental right.

Section 377 of IPC was weapon to harass members of LGBT community, resulting in discrimination.