Kerala High Court has pulled up the Central government for denying the enrollment of transgender candidates in National Cadets Corps following a petition moved by a transgender woman challenging Section 6 of the National Cadet Corps (NCC) Act, 1948.
The petitioner has claimed that the legislation only allows the male and female candidates to enroll as cadets in the National Cadet Corps.
The standing counsel for the Central government, Dayasindhu Shreehari, appeared for the NCC and informed the court that the refusing enrollment to the petitioner was not discrimination and sought some more time to file a counter-affidavit.
The bench of Justice Devan Ramachandran stated, “This is an unfortunate stance the Government of India is taking!” The court also pulled up the government saying that the world has progressed, you cannot remain in the 19th century.
“Certainly there are three genders, male, female, and transgender. In this case the lady, the petitioner herein, has decided to assign to herself her gender as a woman and she has gone through surgery also. Nothing stops you from admitting her even under the NCC Act as a woman,” Justice Ramchandran said.
The counsel appearing for NCC, Shreehari stated that the petitioner got admission to the University as a transgender woman and has been pleading before the court as a transgender woman only.
To which, the court vehemently replied that the Government of India should have been amended the NCC Act for the provision of inclusion of transgender people.
The petition was moved by Advocates Raghul Sudheesh, Lakshmi J, Glaxon KJ and Sanish Sasi Raj challenging the exclusion of the petitioner for being a transgender person as arbitrary. The petition urged the court to decide on the matter in order to address the rampant marginalization and decriminalization faced by transgender people.
The petitioner has urged for the amendment in the NCC law to have necessary provisions for the enrollment of transgender people.