Frame policy for ‘reasonable accommodation’ of transgenders in jobs: SC to govt


THE SUPREME Court on Thursday asked the government to come up with a policy framework under which reasonable accommodation can be given to transgenders for seeking employment in establishments covered by provisions of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019.

A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and Hima Kohli asked the Centre to complete the same in three months in consultation with the National Council for Transgender Persons.

The court noted that the 2019 Act was a watershed moment for transgenders, and added that the Central government should take the lead in facilitating an enabling framework. It also asked the government to place a report on record.

The court also gave the Department of Personnel and Training and the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment at liberty to consult all stakeholders.

The court was hearing a plea by a transgender woman who challenged the denial of a cabin crew job by Air India to her.

An engineering graduate, Shanavi Ponnuswamy, said she was working with AI customer support (domestic and international) in Chennai when the airline came out with an advertisement for cabin crew in 2012. Though she applied, it was rejected. She challenged this as a violation of her fundamental rights and contended that the job was denied to her due to her gender identity.

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Senior Advocate K V Viswanathan, appearing for the airline, told the bench on Thursday that she was not rejected due to her gender identity but because she had not scored the requisite qualifying marks.

The court noted that the matter has wider ramifications and went on to direct the government to come up with the policy.





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