Appeal Filed Before Bombay HC Against MAT Order to Make Provision for Transgender Recruitment; Matter Listed for November 30

Bombay High court Law Insider

Aastha Thakur

Published on: 28 November 2022 at 19:23 IST

The order passed by the Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal (MAT) regarding recruitment of transgender persons for posts under the Home Department was challenged by State Government before the Bombay High Court.

The appeal was filed against the directions given by MAT on November 14, to make provisions for third gender persons to apply for posts under the State Home Department. 

The plea will be heard by the bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Abhay Ahuja on November 30.

The tribunal order was passed against the plea filed by one Arya Pujari, who wanted to apply for the job of a police constable.

The vacancy of police constables was issued by the state government; however, the application form only mentions two genders – Male and Female – and no third gender option was provided. The applicant being transgender could not fill up the blank part of column and the application could not be submitted online.

The applicant hence approached the tribunal seeking appropriate actions to be taken concerning this matter. The decision of MAT was in favour of applicant directing State Government to create a third option for transgender persons in application forms for all recruitments to the State Home Department.

MAT’s chairperson Justice Mridula Bhatkar had also directed the State to fix the criteria for physical standards and tests, so that online applications can be accepted. 

The state government in its appeal states that it is the jurisdiction of Central Government and not the State government. It further highlighted the administrative difficulties faced by the State to come up with a policy.

It was submitted by the state that they still need to work upon policy drafting regarding the special provisions for recruitment of transgender persons, more specifically in the police force.

As a result, it will be very challenging to put the MAT’s recommendations into action in the ongoing police recruitment process, where the deadline for accepting applications was set at November 9 to November 30.

“The Tribunal failed to consider that the police recruitment process as such, is a herculean task and a very lengthy process,” the plea stated.

Given the urgency of filling the vacant positions in the police department, the State requested that the continuing recruitment process should not be hindered in any way.

“Formulating and implementing any policy, especially on the issue at hand, requires a considerable amount of time as the same requires deliberation and discussions at various levels and with various stakeholders. In the present scenario, neither the government of India has formulated any policy in that regard nor the State of Maharashtra,” the plea said.

The State reiterated that it is not feasible to implement the MAT’s directives in such a short period of time, especially in the middle of the recruiting process, in the absence of such a clear policy decision regarding transgender people.

In addition, it was argued in the plea that by issuing such directives in the absence of any policy decision, MAT had overstepped its bounds and interfered with policymaking.

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