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Bestowing Parity: 'Transgender' is now a new gender option in the Assam exam form!

By Priti Kumari


GUWAHATI: In an unprecedented move, the Assam Government has prefaced a 'transgender' option in the gender category of the civil service examination form and hence became the first Indian state to do so. As per the media sources, for the upcoming Combined Competitive Examination (CCE) 2020 which is conducted by the Assam Public Service Commission (APSC),42 transgender persons have applied.

Commenting on this, APSC chairman Pallab Bhattacharya stated," Initially we had not made a separate category for transgender persons when we issued notification for the exam in September. We were soon approached by a prominent transgender activist Swati Bidhan Baruah to include a separate category. We discussed with Baruah and also checked with UPSC where transgender persons are already allowed to apply in a separate category called other. The state government was apprised of the matter and a separate category was created".

Swati Bidhan Baruah, Assam's first transgender judge and the associate vice-chairperson of the Assam State Transgender Welfare Board affirmed," It is a much-welcomed development. But only doing so wouldn't be of much help if special steps are not included. I have written to the commission to secure a reservation for the community and also provide special standard operating procedures(SOP) so that others do not misuse this provision".

With an optimistic note that soon, we along with our policymakers bestow the fundamental rights to our trans brothers & sisters of which they were hitherto bereaved.

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