The Delhi High Court on Monday issued a notice to the Centre, the Aam Aadmi Party government in the national Capital and all municipal corporations in the city on a petition seeking directions to construct separate public toilets for transgender people, PTI reported.
A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked the authorities to respond by September 13.
In her petition, Jasmine Kaur Chhabra, a law student, submitted that not having separate public washrooms was in violation of Articles 14 (right to equality) and 21 (right to life and liberty) of the Constitution. She contended that it was “not fundamentally or morally correct” to ask persons belonging to a particular gender to use washrooms designated for other genders.
“When the third gender uses the washrooms made for male and female, then their right to privacy is violated,” the petitioner said, according to The Indian Express. She added that transgender persons faced the risk of sexual assault and harassment in toilets built for men.
The plea cited Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) Revised Guidelines, issued in 2017, which recommend separate toilet seats for transgender people and gave examples of cities such as Mysore, Bhopal and Ludhiana, where separate washrooms were made.
Chhabra contended that the absence of separate toilets for transgender people also violated the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019.
“This is a serious and concerning issue which the people of transgender community face in their daily life and even after several judgments and orders passed by Supreme Court of India and other high courts, no action has been taken in this regard,” the plea stated.