Out of 27 districts in Chattisgarh, 17 are reeling from the Maoist insurgency. To tackle this issue, the Chattisgarh Police Force is planning to recruit 35,000 constables from these 27 districts.
In a watershed moment for the transgender community in Chattisgarh, this police recruitment drive is open to them. Pawan Deo, Additional Director General of Police (recruitment) of the state, told The Hindu, “We are set to recruit them if they pass a mandatory written exam and physical test.”
This is not the first time transgenders have been in the police force. Prithika Yashini and R Nasriya are a part of the police force in Tamil Nadu. But, this is the first time, the police force is actively opening recruitment to transgenders.
In Chattisgarh, transgenders can avail of 14% reservation, in government jobs and education. This has helped in bringing the community, which regularly faces abject discrimination, into the mainstream society.
A police officer on conditions of anonymity, told The Hindu that the transgenders would be helpful, because Maoists use propaganda that the police uses frisking as an excuse to harass tribals. Believing them to be a valuable police asset, he says a job and a new identity would motivate them.
Police experts in the department are currently working out the physical standards of recruitment. Activist Vidya Rajpoot believes that this drive will help the community. Praising the move, she told The Hindu, “This recruitment will give hope to our community. People will not hide their identity and come forward. In Maoist areas of Chhattisgarh, many people from our community are living a miserable life, but this job will be a boon for them.”