Kerala Set an example again: Govt allott quota to transgender persons in colleges

Kerala is the state that has always spearheaded social reforms, through many initiatives and now the state has once again set an example.

In a bid to end the injustice against the “third-gender”, the Kerala Education Department has decided to allot two additional seats for transgender persons in colleges.

On Tuesday, the Higher Education department issued a government order stating that two additional seats would be allotted for transgender persons in all courses.

The circular by Additional Secretary MG Ranjith Kumar has been issued to the Director of Collegiate Education and the Registrars of a number of universities including CUSAT, Calicut University, Kerala University, Mahatma Gandhi University, Sree Sankara University of Sanskrit and Thunchathezhuthachan Malayalam University.

“The government is pleased to sanction two additional seats in all courses in Universities and affiliated Arts and Science colleges exclusively for admitting transgender students subject to fulfillment of qualification,” the order said.

The order was released in the wake of proposals by the Social Justice Department. “Due to societal issues, these students often have to discontinue their studies or join other academic institutions after an academic year or after the admission process is closed,” reads the order.

Queerala, the community-based organization for Malayali LGBTIQ people, shared the news via it’s Facebook handled saying it’s a progressive step towards inclusive education.

“Higher Education Department of Kerala issues a GO(Govt Order) asking all Higher Educational Institutions in the state to Reserve two seats, for all courses across colleges and Universities, for Transgender Students. A few transgender students, who had applied for various courses in Ernakulam Maharajas College, couldn’t get through the merit-based admission process; They then approached the state Social Justice Department, which along with other departments initiated this major step towards Inclusive Education.” Queerala posted on Facebook.

Kerala, in 2015, under the then United Democratic Front (UDF) government, adopted a “State Policy for Transgenders” that calls for a society where men, women, and transgenders have equal access to capabilities, economic opportunities, assets and services, right to dignity and freedom from violence and right to expression.

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