Before the end of this month Kerala government-owned Kochi Metro Rail Limited will have 23 new employees onboard to serve its customers.
Now, one may ask what is special about this as government departments keep hiring new people as per their need.
Yes, you are right in saying that every department hires new employees. But what they don’t do is recruitment of transgenders and that too around two dozen transgenders.
The Kochi Metro has done it and also provided training to 23 transgenders to be attached to its ticketing, customer care and housekeeping departments.
Video – Manorama News
So, next time if you are visiting ‘god’s own country’ Kerala and going to Kochi, you may be welcomed by one of these transgender employees at the Metro rail ticket counter.
The Kochi Metro hired these persons from the transgender community with an aim to bring them into the mainstream.
“People don’t interact with trans people. They live separately from society, they are not given jobs, and their rights are not respected. We want to bring them into the mainstream by ensuring that people interact with them every day – on their way to work, for example,” said spokeswoman for Kochi Metro Rail, Rashmi CR as reported by The Guardian.
She added that it was Kochi Metro’s aim to be not just seen as a means of transport, but also a livelihood improvement project.
People have given a standing ovation to this move of Kochi Metro.
Kudumbashree, a women’s community organisation in Kerala, helped in identifying and screening transgender people for various jobs at Kochi Metro Rail, whose first phase will cover a 13.4-kilometre distance.
There are around 2 million transgender people in India who mostly earn their livelihood by begging, prostitution and singing & dancing.
In India, they are still a highly discriminated community despite a landmark Supreme Court judgment in 2014, in which the apex court granted them the status of third gender.
Earlier, they were forced to write male or female against their gender. The apex court had asked the central government to treat transgenders as socially and economically backward.