Another Win For The Transgender Community Following PHC Census Decision

Another Win For The Transgender Community Following PHC Census Decision

PESHAWAR: In a notable and first of its kind occurrence, Farzana Jan on Friday became the first resident of Pakistan to carry a passport that enables its carrier to choose a sex other than male or female.

This breakthrough in terms of gender equality stems from the relentless efforts of individuals from the transgender community and years of activism that constrained the nation’s legal framework to recognize sexual orientation as a concerning factor prior to the formation of new legislation. One such instance is the aforementioned, a right step towards equal rights in terms of self-identification.

The prime supporter and leader of Trans Action Alliance had been urging for legislation with regards to transgender self-identification. Notwithstanding, it took her over six months to get the passport processed and incorporate a different section for individuals, who would prefer not to be recognized as male or female, to characterize themselves as ‘X’. The travel permit’s remaining details remain the same as those of ordinary passports.

The leader of Trans Action Alliance said, “It’s the biggest milestone for the transgender community of Pakistan that they will now get a passport having a separate column about their gender.”

Previously the Peshawar High Court (PHC) had decided on allocating a separate column for transgenders in the census form that was held recently in the country. Similarly, in 2011, the Supreme Court issued directives on the formation of CNICs having a separate gender column for the trans community.

 

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Maneha Tariq

The writer is a graduate of Lahore Grammar School Defence and is currently pursuing the LLB degree from Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). She has previously worked for DIL organization (Developments in Literacy) as their New York correspondent and for Paperazzi Magazine as a summer intern.



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