HC comes to rescue of transgender person being pressurized by parents, cops

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Mumbai, Jul 17 (PTI) The Bombay High Court on Saturday asked Mumbai Police to ensure that an adult transgender person from Karnataka who is living in the city is not forced to return with his parents against his wishes.

Transgender persons are citizens of the country and should not be treated like criminals, a bench of Justices Sambhaji Shinde and Nizamoodin Jamada said.

The court was hearing a petition filed by a transgender person, an aspiring choreographer hailing from Mysore, seeking protection against the parents and police.

Advocate Vijay Hiremath, the petitioner's lawyer, said his client's parents had come to Mumbai along with personnel of Mysore Police. They wanted him to go back with them, the lawyer said.

Further, the police in suburban Versova -- where the petitioner is living -- asked him to leave Mumbai, advocate Hiremath claimed.

'Without their wish and will, how can you ask them to go out of Mumbai? They are not offenders, they have not committed any offense,' the high court said (using the gender-neutral pronouns `they-them' as per the petitioner's wish).

'They are major. They can take decisions for their own life and live wherever they want to. No one can ask them to leave the city against their will, at least not like this,' Justice Shinde said.

'Don't treat them like criminals. You (police) have to protect them, they are citizens of this country. They can travel anywhere,' the court said.

The HC directed Versova Police to protect the petitioner from being forced to leave Mumbai and adjourned the hearing to August 6. PTI AVI KRK KRK KRK

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