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Soon, Transgender Guards May Help Ensure Safety of Women at Bihar's Short Stay Homes

Recently, at least 13 inmates of one such facility in Muzaffarpur alleged that they were raped, forced into unnatural sex and sent to other places for sex trade by the owner of an NGO, who was arrested along with eight other staff members.

Alok Kumar | News18dmalok

Updated:July 18, 2018, 8:04 PM IST
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Soon, Transgender Guards May Help Ensure Safety of Women at Bihar's Short Stay Homes
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar during his weekly meeting.
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Patna: The social welfare department of the Bihar government is working on a proposal to appoint transgender guards at short stay homes for women in the wake of sexual assault cases reported from such facilities in Muzaffarpur and Chhapra.

Talking to News18, Atul Prasad, principal secretary of the department, said: “After discussing the proposal in front of chief minister Nitish Kumar, I have forwarded it for final approval. A final decision will be taken shortly after which we will direct NGOs to give priority to transgenders while appointing guards for the homes.”

He added, “The deployment of transgenders will instill a sense of security among women. They will be entitled to the same salary and service conditions as any other male guard. The decision will serve the twin purpose of security and providing employment to the third gender.”

Reshma, a transgender community leader, had raised several issues before the chief minister during his weekly idea exchange programme on Monday. The proposal of transgender guards was mooted during the meeting and was instantly accepted by Kumar.

The short stay homes are funded by the state government but select NGOs are given the responsibility of running them. Recently, at least 13 inmates of one such facility in Muzaffarpur alleged that they were raped, forced into unnatural sex and sent to other places for sex trade by the owner of the NGO, who was arrested along with eight other staff members. Last week, a similar incident was reported from Chhapra, where a pregnant inmate said she was forced to have sex. Two people have been arrested on her complaint.

Prasad said the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) was asked by the government to conduct a social audit of the stay homes. In its report submitted to the social welfare department, TISS mentioned how several women inmates were subjected to sexual assault.

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