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Transgenders invited to be a part of mohalla committees in Mumbai suburbs

Police say that when members of the community told them about certain incidences they faced in the past, they realised more interaction is required between the police and transgenders

mumbai Updated: Jun 15, 2018 01:24 IST
Yesha Kotak
Yesha Kotak
Hindustan Times
Mohalla committees are a civil society initiative involving members of the police and the public.(HT FILE)

Members of the city’s transgender community have been invited to join the mohalla committees created for better policing in Zone VII, which includes police stations in Ghatkopar, Vikhroli and Bhandup among others.

The invitation was extended in a workshop held between members of transgender community and police personnel from Zone VII (in the eastern suburbs). The meeting was held to give the police a better understanding of the community so that there is sensitivity in the way the police handle issues related to transgenders.

The session, which was organised by Kinnar Maa Trust, a group representing transgenders, was held on Thursday at Chirag Nagar police station, Ghatkopar. It was attended by 70 senior police officers and their staff from Ghatkopar, Pant Nagar, Vikhroli , Parksite, Bhandup, Kanjurmarg, Mulund and Navghar police stations.This comes after three transgenders were brutally beaten in Thane allegedly by Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) workers around 15 days ago, following which one of them attempted suicide.

“When the members of the community told us about certain incidences that they faced in the past, we realised that more interaction is required amongst us. This is why it was decided they should become a part of mohalla committees, post which there can be discussion about various aspects of law that applies to them,” said Rohini Kale, senior police inspector, Pant Nagar police station.

Mohalla committees are a civil society initiative involving members of the police and the public.

Akhilesh Kumar Singh, deputy commissioner of police (DCP), zone VII, said the aim is to inform all those working at these eight police stations about how to deal with transgenders.

“It has been decided that a counselling session would be held in cases that involve the community. Also, contact details of the members and social activist working for them in each area will be shared at our police station, so that they can become the first point of contact in cases that involve transgenders,” said Singh.

Salma Khan, Lok Adalat panel member and president of Kinnar Maa Trust, said that though the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) judgement of the apex court was passed in 2014, there hasn’t been an implementation of the verdict at ground level.The Nalsa judgement recognised transgenders as a third gender.

“The aim of this exercise was that we will be filing a petition in the high court soon after taking a feedback from the police members because there have been various cases where members of our community have been abused, instead of us being treated as equal, unlike the judgement given by the Supreme Court,” said Khan.

First Published: Jun 15, 2018 01:24 IST