New Delhi: Pushing greater inclusivity for the third gender, the government has asked state departments to ensure that transgenders are allowed to use restrooms meant for both men and women as per their choice.
The sanitation ministry has issued this advisory to all state governments in its latest circular on the guidelines on gender issues in sanitation.
The circular issued on Monday on April 3 states, “Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) should make a conscious effort that they are recognised as equal citizens and users of toilets. They should be allowed to use the facility of their choice (men or women) in community or public toilets.”
The circular also appreciated the roles of many transgenders in championing the government’s Swachhata Abhhiyan and added that efforts should be made to ensure that members of the community are “recognised as equal citizens”.
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Meanwhile, in another move to ensure public toilet access for transgenders, the Madras High Court ordered the Tamil Nadu government to build public toilets for members of the community in parts of the city where they live in large numbers.
However, the 2014 Supreme Court judgment recognising transgenders as ‘third gender,’ which also included an order for separate toilets for members of the community in public places, is yet to be implemented.