In a step towards the social inclusion of members of the transgender community who do not identify as male or female, the Kerala central library has introduced a third column in its membership forms, allowing them to seek membership of the library without compromising on their gender identity.
According to The Times of India, the first form would be presented to transgender rights activist Sheetal Shyam by education minister C Raveendranath on Tuesday.
â€śEducation was a right which had been always denied to us. We had suffered discrimination the most at educational institutions. To gain membership in a library and to borrow books, had been my long-cherished dream. It is a huge recognition for us to be part of a library and many people would be benefited by this decision. If we had an opportunity to access libraries earlier, there would have been more authors like A Revathy from the transgender community,â€ť Sheetal Shyam told ToI.
The librarian PK Shobhana also said that it is high time for society to accept members of the community.
â€śThrough library memberships, we aim to provide a platform for transgender people. A new world will be opened for them, which was denied to them earlier,â€ť she said.
Several government bodies and departments have been altering forms documentation to include members of the community in recent years.