As another positive development for the transgender community, Kerala government has announced that it will pay for Sex Reassignment Surgeries (SRS) for transgenders who wish to undergo a sex change. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan through a Facebook post announced that his government will reimburse up to Rs 2 lakh for each transgender person as hospital expenses. Vijayan wrote,
“For transgenders who want to live as men or women, finance is no longer an issue. For better education opportunities and job opportunities, the government will provide support and assistance.”
Those who have already undergone the operation can also apply for assistance.
Ever since Kerala became the first state to announce a transgender policy in 2015, the state government has announced a series of measures aimed towards the welfare of the transgender community. Just last month, the Social Justice Department announced that the government plans to set up short stay homes that will be equipped to provide medical assistance. As a part of the Livelihood Inclusion and Financial Empowerment (LIFE) initiative, the state has already listed around 466 transgender persons, some of whom will get assistance from the government to set up an event management company. Through a tie-up with Uber, 25 transgenders have been offered training in driving cars.
Under the state literacy mission, the Higher Education Department also recently ordered government and government-aided colleges to ensure that two seats must be issued to the members of the transgender community for graduate courses to tackle high dropout rates.
The state also launched a helpline earlier this year operated by 25 members of the transgender community and directed specifically towards helping transgenders.