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Govts not doing enough for transgenders, says Election Commission of India Brand Ambassador Sanjana Singh

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By ETV Bharat English Team

Published : Nov 4, 2023, 10:01 PM IST

In an exclusive conversation with ETV Bharat, Sanjana Singh demanded that on the lines of the Ladli Behna Yojana for women, there must be a special provision for eunuchs.

Ahead of the upcoming Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections, political parties are busy campaigning for their respective candidates and wooing voters to vote for their candidates. But, eunuchs are not on the agenda of any political party. In MP, many announcements were made by Kinnar Welfare Board to three per cent reservation for transgenders in government jobs, but to no avail.
Govts not doing enough for transgenders: Election Commission of India Brand Ambassador Sanjana Singh

Bhopal: Ahead of the upcoming Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections, political parties are busy campaigning for their respective candidates and wooing voters to vote for their candidates. But, eunuchs are not on the agenda of any political party. In MP, many announcements were made by Kinnar Welfare Board to three per cent reservation for transgenders in government jobs, but to no avail.

ETV Bharat spoke to transgender Sanjana Singh, brand ambassador of the Election Commission of India, on all these issues related to eunuchs. Here are the excerpts from the interview.

ETV Bharat (ETB): Isn't the vote of the third gender valuable?

Sanjana Singh (SS): Many promises and proposals like a three per cent reservation in government jobs, and the Eunuch Welfare Board were formed, but nothing was implemented. An initiative is taken for every class, and something or the other is done for men and women, but here eunuchs are ignored. Where is the three per cent reservation? I don't know. If the Kinnar Welfare Board had been formed, the situation of Kinnars would have been different today.

ETB: If eunuchs get financial support then why should they ask for the politicians' attention?

SS: As the amount is being given to women under the Ladli Behna Yojana, there is no provision for eunuchs. We even have to struggle to make Ayushman cards and ration cards. There is no such scheme for us. If financial support is given to eunuchs also then the situation of eunuchs will change. Eunuchs are not in anyone's manifesto.

Also read: Coimbatore transgender demands 2 per cent reservation for their community in education, employment

Today even cow has become a part of the manifesto, but we eunuchs are not included. If nothing else, just build a community hall for us. When every class matters then why not us? Till now political parties have never made any announcement regarding eunuchs in their manifesto.

ETB: What are the issues of eunuchs?

SS: Eunuchs want economic support. One of their important demands is Manglik or community building. Eunuchs, who want to study further should be given scholarships. Just as women are getting the benefits of Ladli Brahmin Yojana, a similar scheme should be started for eunuchs also. The proposal of the Kinnar Welfare Board has been stuck since 2014, it should be implemented.

Arrangements should be made for three per cent reservation in jobs for eunuchs. From ration cards to Ayushman Cards, facilities should be given to eunuchs.

ETB: Is the weak vote bank of eunuchs the reason for ignoring them?

SS: There are around 1,300 eunuch communities in MP. Among these, their numbers and localities are present only in big cities like Bhopal, Jabalpur, Gwalior and Indore. There are two localities in their name in Bhopal. The special thing is that MP is the only state where eunuchs made their way into politics and the first eunuch in the country, Shabnam aunty, was elected from Sohagpur. Even after this, eunuchs have been showing strength in the elections from the mayor to councillor even winning the elections. But, they could not sustain themselves on the slippery path of politics.

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