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Number of transgender voters in Jharkhand up 34 times

State chief electoral officer, which enrolled merely nine third gender voters in 2013, registered 307 such voters by January 30, 2019. A total of 281 transgender voters would exercise their franchise for the first in upcoming general elections.

ranchi Updated: Feb 28, 2019 13:52 IST
Sanjoy Dey
Sanjoy Dey
Hindustan Times, Dhanbad
transgender voters in jharkhand,trans voters,dhanbad trans voters
Transgenders during their two day national meet at Gomoh in Dhanbad ( Photo-Bijay-Hindustan Times)

Ranchi: The population of third gender voters has increased by 34 times in Jharkhand since 2013, election officials said on Wednesday.

The number of total voters registered in the state, where parliamentary elections are likely in April, is at 2.19 crore as on January 30, 2019. Of the total number, 307 belong to the third gender, according to the electoral roll of the election commission. The number of total third gender voters in the state in 2013 was merely 9.

“Number of third gender voters increased in the past two years, particularly in 2017 and 2018, due to various programmes launched for promotion of inclusive voting,” said Vinay Kumar Choubey, additional chief electoral officer (ACEO), Jharkhand.

Till 2016, merely 29 third gender voters were registered in the electoral roll, which went up to 123 in 2017 and 290 in 2018. The number rose to 307 in the last published electoral rolls on January 30 this year, officials said.

Officials at the chief electoral office (CEO), Jharkhand, said major registrations were done in Ranchi and Jamshedpur. The administrations of two districts had launched special drives to include the names of third gender voters in electoral rolls.

Over 281 third gender voters would exercise their franchise for the first time in the upcoming parliamentary elections for 14 seats in Jharkhand. The third gender community welcomed the initiative of the electoral office, Jharkhand.

The community alleged that no political parities took the voting rights of the community seriously in the past. “I would like to thank the election commission of India and the present government, who registered names of people from our community in the electoral roll,” said Nargis Mousi, a middle-aged transgender from Noor Nagar in Old Ranchi.

Some of the members of the community in Noor Nagar said when elections are held, they would also spread awareness on the significance of voting in a democratic system.

Nargis said that third gender people should also be given a chance to contest elections, as they could do better work for the development of the society. “I would like to contest elections but I can’t because I don’t have money. Election commission should make special provision for our community to contest the elections,” Nargis said.

The ACEO said that there was no specific provision for them but people belonging to the could also contest elections like others.

First Published: Feb 28, 2019 13:52 IST