Get Inspired, Be Empowered Forums LGBTQ Issues & Rights Problem of torture and discrimination of transgenders in Indian prisons.

6 replies, 6 voices Last updated by Semantee Chattopadhyay 2 years, 12 months ago
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    Manpreet Singh
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    Transgender persons in India have historically been subject to violence and discrimination through laws that have criminalized their lives and livelihoods. Despite recent legal and judicial developments that have corrected these historical wrongs, transgender person relationship with the penal state continues to be a fragile one, evident in laws and practices that either targets them, or address them as a distinct category, or neglect them entirely. One such site of legal and policy discrimination the prison. Transgender persons in prison are likely to face particular harms on the basis of their identity. that are compounded by harms that characterize the conditions of confinement. While transgender persons are made hyper-visible in public spaces, they are invisible in laws, rules, and practices.
    Transgender persons encounter social, legal, and political hostilities on the basis of their gender identity. Routine discrimination in accessing education, employment, health care, and housing, and a range of other socioeconomic and cultural factors compel some transgender persons to engage in often criminalized means of making a living, such as begging and sex work. It results in harassment, violence, arbitrary arrest, and illegal detention,9 in turn, creating a fear of engaging with the justice system. Harmful stereotypes regarding transgender persons, stigmatization, regular harassment, and violence have characterized their engagement with the criminal justice system in India. Since prisons reproduce the dynamics of power observed in society,41 transgender prisoners are likely to experience identical forms of harm in confinement, exacerbated by the harms endemic to prisons. The placement of transgender prisoners in men’s or women’s prisons influences their treatment due to gender-specific practices, such as dress codes and body searches and the gendered hierarchies that characterize prison culture. Accounts by transgender persons reveal that they face verbal, physical, and sexual violence in prisons by jail wardens and other inmates. Further, no provisions have been made for the specific medical care facilities that transgender prisoners.
    In order to solve their position, the process of framing future inquiries and conceptualizing reform requires insight into the daily realities of prison life from transgender prisoners. Future studies that aim at legal and policy reform in India foreground the self-narratives of transgender prisoners should be made.

    simran arora
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    The worse nightmare for a transgender in our society is not what happens around, but going to jail in a male or female block. I witnessed the first torture and discrimination against the community in an Indian web series. Some born identity themselves as men, women, or third sex, but the Indian prisons do not identify them as either.

    Inside the Indian prisons, the story is different. Many transgenders are raped or are strip-teased as a source of entertainment. The history of abuse is worse for this community because when society fails to accept them, they do not hold a presence in either of the prison blocks.

    Lately, the Kerala government witnessed the issue and inaugurated a special prison block for the transgender community. A few governments allow the prisoners to make a living for their families, but the right for transgenders do not exist. Even when transgenders leave the prison, their families fail to accept them. In the end, they are left with no home and no emotional support.

    The mocking in prison blocks becomes worse because they do not have separate toilets. Also, many bully them to do their errands or perform sexual intercourse with other people. All kinds of physical assaults take place, and the jails hardly seem to care about it.

    The Kerala government has taken legitimate steps to stop the violence against transgenders. Also, if parents discriminate against their child for belonging to this community, then they shall also be punished for the same.

    Apoorva Pathak
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    Why we treat them just like untouchable? This is inhumane. Many of the transgenders are discriminated In police custody. There is no separate prisoner room for transgender when they kept with other prisoners they are molested and even sometimes lead to death or suicide. They are sometimes exploited by police in prison they are torched to show their nude body they are even raped and torched. This all is so inhumane that we can not think of it.

    Even though there are many providers for their protection in IPC, CRPc and constitution but still they are very rare cases that can approach them. Sometimes these transgenders are hesitant to reveal their identity and when it gets revealed they are bitten and molested by police and prison inmates.

    As these transgenders are not having support from their family and society it becomes very difficult for them to get bail and even to know their rights in the constitution. Lawyers are not available to them. Albeit there are many NGO’s who are working towards this issue and to give justice to transgender society but they are not easily accessible to them.

    Article 21 provide the constitution right to all the citizen or not to have right to life and privacy. There is much judgement regarding cruelly to transgender in prison and also these activities are unconstitutional and punishable according to the Supreme court and the high court. Article 22 give the right to know what are the causes of detention and has to represent before the magistrate within 24 hours although there are many exceptions such as under UAPA we are deprived of these right.
    Even after so many provisions, there are many cases related to the inhumane treatment of transgender. Hope we will bring inclusiveness in our society and treat everyone equal in the eyes of law.

    Anika
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    Throughout history, transgender people have been discriminated and still are not treated even with little respect by the people of India. With the problematic transgender laws in place, It proves to be difficult for transgender people. We can only imagine how the case is for transgender people in prison.

    Transgender people face a lot of discrimination in prison. They are often misgendered, people often make assumptions of what gender a transgender person might be based solely on their genitalia, which is very wrong because transgender people do not identify with the gender they had at birth and even if they have genitalia of a gender, it doesn’t mean they identify as that gender.

    As a result of this,transgender women are put in male prisons wherein their safety is at danger. Transgender people are raped, molested and abused in prisons by the prison guards and prisoners.

    They are usually denied fundamental rights that cisgender people have. When they’re sick, they’re neglected. It’s as if they do not even exist for some ignorant people. When they need legal aid, it is denied. The people who belong to marginalized groups are also denied basic rights.

    We need to understand that firstly, transgender people deserve their basic rights. There needs to be a separate block for transgender and non-binary people. They do speak out but nobody listens. If we raised more awareness on this topic, it would be good. I hope that there will be no discrimination in the future.

    Yash Tiwari
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    India’s penal laws are deeply discriminatory and violate the human rights of the transgender community. Transgender persons are treated as criminals by the state even though they have done no wrong. They are often arrested and remanded to prisons that do not have a gender recognition board; subjected to abuse, torture, and sexual violence by correctional officials and prison inmates; denied access to hormone replacement therapy and other healthcare; placed in solitary confinement, deported, or kept in judicial custody for indefinite periods while they await trial.

    The socially tenuous position of transgender persons in India is compounded when they are sent to prison. No aspect of life for transgender prisoners is alike in Indian prisons, which lack policies addressing the particular needs and vulnerabilities of transgender prisoners. A national survey conducted by Lawyers Collective in 2010 found that at least 3% of prison inmates in Indian jails were transgender women (surges) who were usually packed into barracks, often double-bunked with male prisoners. Although their male counterparts sometimes harass them sexually and disturb them mentally. Transgender people also experience high rates of rape and violence in their day-to-day lives. Many foreign observers have characterized India as one of the worst countries for sexual minorities, as violence against transgender individuals is often related to a society’s pervasive gender norms and values regarding the role of men and women in society.

    Many transgender persons are under the impression that they will be housed with inmates of their identified gender. In one case, a transgender woman in Mumbai refused her psychological treatment for a year and a half due to the knowledge that she would be placed in jail with male prisoners.[18] In other cases, many transgender persons choose to stay in jails where they faced abuse until they could contact their families to arrange for bail. The police do not recognize the existence of transgender people. Rather, they categorize them as male, female, or eunuch. These classifications may be used to determine the incarceration of a transgendered person in a men’s or women’s jail.

    Facing discrimination in prisons is not a rare case. The legal and human rights of transgender prisoners are protected by the Constitution of India, but they face a lot to get justice. As in most countries, the focus on the rights of the transgender community focuses primarily on discrimination in employment and access to health care services (Sukhwinder & Sagar 2011; Thangraj et al. 2005). However, other state institutions have received less attention. This includes their situation, especially in prisons. These findings indicate that prisons are unsafe, discriminatory spaces for many transgender prisoners. The limited options for the redress of grievances as well as inmates’ accounts of harassment, assault, and abuse by the authorities demand that changes to prison policy in India be made on an urgent basis.

    Semantee Chattopadhyay
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    @semantee03
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    Violence, misgendering, medical negligence and routine denial of legal aid is what marked the experience of transgender inmates in prisons across India. Those who come from marginalised groups social or sexual are routinely denied even their fundamental rights. A report by the Wire attracts how vulnerable one such group the transgender community is in India’s prisons. The report says that many trans women were forced into male presence when they faced physical and sexual violence. In the testimonies recorded trans prisoners said that their complaints are routinely overlooked by prison authorities so also their medical needs. In 2014, the Supreme court of India in the national legal services authority nalsa vs Union of India judgement granted legal recognition to trans persons gender identity male-female or as the third gender. Several other treatments have also a transgender people’s right to decide their self-identified standard but such judgements haven’t yet been translated into action for transgender prisoners who are regularly misgendered, i.e attributed the gender which they do not identify.
    The transgender person’s protection rights act passed in 2019 creates trouble for transgender prisoners. Hitman dates for legal gender recognition and requires an individual to apply for a transgender certificate. In this backdrop, a transgender person who enters prison without this certificate is at the mercy of the prison authorities and doctors to recognise and certify them based on their genitals. Despite article 39 (A) ab the Indian Constitution providing for free legal aid to the poor and weaker sections of the society, transfer prisoners find it difficult to secure aid. Legal representation for trans prisoners makes securing bail difficult. What makes any redressal of these issues difficult is the lack of data on transgender prisoners. Prison statistics published by the NCRB are inadequate. They only record data along a narrow male-female binary, transgender people are not counted separately. There is no uniformity or any one method used to record the data of transgender people in prisons. Some States updated measures to uphold the rights of trans prison.

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