The Act gives the police arbitrary power

Karnataka govt agrees to remove eunuch from police act following PIL
news Wednesday, January 13, 2016 - 09:54

Karnataka government on Tuesday has submitted to the high court that it will remove the word ‘eunuch’ from Section 36 A of the Karnataka Police Act, which according to sexual minorities groups is oppressive in nature, reported Times of India.

This comes after a PIL that was filed by the Karnataka Sexual Minorities Forum which sought to declare Section 36A of the Karnataka Police Act as “unconstitutional”. The Section in question provides for maintaining a register of names and places of eunuchs suspected of kidnapping or emasculating boys, and so amounts to further marginalisation of the transgender community.

However, the government said that it cannot strike Section 36(A) away, but will replace the word eunuch with suitable word, reported The Hindu.

A Division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice Subhro Kamal Mukherjee and Justice Ravi Malimath heard the PIL. On principal government advocate R Devdas’s request, they have granted time for the government to submit amended provisions of the Act The next hearing on the PIL would be after six months, reported Deccan Herald.

In the previous hearing of the PIL in November 2015, the government had stated that it might remove Section 36(A) or amend it as the petitioners claimed that the said section operates on the wrong assumption that the members of the community commit such crimes and also gives the police arbitrary powers.

The forum claimed, "The sub section (c) of Section 36A gives arbitrary powers to the police commissioner to prohibit by an order any eunuch from doing any activity as stated in the order. It is left to the whims and fancies of the commissioner to determine what is an undesirable activity as no policy directive is provided to guide them. As a result, the commissioner has unfettered and unqualified discretion to regulate what an eunuch can or cannot do,” 

This is an aggregated report from Times of India , The Hindu and Deccan Herald

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