This case analysis has been written by Shubham Khandelwal am currently pursuing BBA.LLB from FIMT, IP University. Picture credits to


AIR 2014 SC 1863


Supreme Court of India


K S Radhakrishnan and AK Sikri


Public Legal Services Authority v. Association of India is a milestone choice by the Supreme Court of India, which proclaimed transsexuals the ‘third sex’, avowed that the central rights allowed under the Constitution of India will be similarly pertinent to them, and gave them the privilege to self-ID of their sex as male, female or third sexual orientation. This judgment has been recognized as a significant advance towards sexual orientation correspondence in India. Moreover, the court likewise held that since transsexuals were treated as socially and monetarily in reverse classes, they will be allowed reservations in admissions to instructive establishments and occupations.


This case was recorded by the national legal services authority of India (nalsa) to legitimately perceive people who fall outside the male/female sexual orientation parallel, including people who distinguish as “third sex”.


The National Legal Services Authority of India (NALSA) was an essential solicitor. It had been established with the essential goal of giving free lawful guide administrations to the impeded areas of Indian society. Different solicitors in the issue were the Poojya Mata Nasib Kaur Ji Women Welfare Society, an enlisted society and NGO, and Laxmi Narayan Tripathy, a prestigious Hijra dissident.


The case was heard under the watchful eye of a two-judge seat of the supreme court, made out of justice K.S Panicker Radhakrishnan and justice Arjan Kumar Sikri. Justice Radhakrishnan had worked as a standing counsel for various instructive and social associations and held arrangements in the high courts of Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir, and Gujarat before his rise to the supreme court. Justice Sikri started legitimate practice in Delhi, having some expertise in constitutional cases, labor and service matters, and arbitration matters. Preceding his height to the supreme court, he held arrangements in the Delhi high court and Punjab and Haryana high court.

Issues and Decision

The court needed to choose whether people who fall outside the male/female sexual orientation twofold can be lawfully perceived as “third sex” people. It pondered on in the case of ignoring non-paired sexual orientation personalities is a penetrate of essential rights ensured by the constitution of India. It alluded to a “specialist committee on issues relating to transgender” comprised under the ministry of social justice and empowerment to build up its judgment. This was a milestone choice where the pinnacle court lawfully perceived “third sexual orientation”/transsexual people unexpectedly and talked about “sex personality” finally. The court perceived that third sexual orientation people were qualified for central rights under the constitution and under international law. Further, it guided state governments to create systems to understand the privileges of “third sex”/transsexual people.

Fundamental Rights

The court deciphered ‘nobility’ under article 21 of the constitution to remember decent variety for self-articulation, which permitted an individual to have a stately existence. It put one’s sexual orientation character inside the structure of the basic right to respect under article 21. Further, it noticed that the privilege of uniformity (article 14 of the constitution) and opportunity of articulation (article 19(1) (a)) was surrounded in sexually unbiased terms (“all people”). Therefore, the privilege to balance and opportunity of articulation would stretch out to transsexual people. It caused to notice the way that transsexual people were dependent upon “outrageous separation in all circles of society” which was an infringement of their entitlement to uniformity. Further, it incorporated the option to communicate one’s sexual orientation “through dress, words, activity, or conduct” under the ambit of the opportunity of articulation. Under articles 15 and 16, separation on the ground of “sex” is unequivocally disallowed. The court held that “sex” here doesn’t just allude to natural credits, (for example, chromosomes, genitalia, and optional sexual attributes) yet additionally incorporates “sex” (in light of one’s self-recognition). Accordingly, the court held that segregation on the ground of “sex” remembered separation for the premise of sexual orientation character. Accordingly, the court held that transsexual people were qualified for central rights under articles 14, 15, 16, 19(1) (a), and 21 of the constitution. Further, the court additionally alluded to center global common liberties arrangements and the Yogyakarta principles to perceive transsexual people’s basic freedoms.


  • The Court has guided Centre and State Governments to allow legitimate acknowledgment of sexual orientation personality whether it be male, female or third-sex:
  • Legitimate Recognition for the Third Gender: In perceiving the third sexual orientation classification, the Court perceived that key rights are accessible to the third sex in a similar way as they are to guys and females. Further, non-acknowledgment of the third sex in both lawbreakers and common resolutions, for example, those identifying with marriage, appropriation, separate, and so on is oppressive to the transsexual.
  • Legitimate Recognition for Persons progressing inside male/female parallel: As for how the real methodology of acknowledgment will occur, the Court just expresses that they like to follow the mind of the individual and utilize the “Mental Test’ instead of the ‘Organic Test.’ They likewise announce that demanding Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS) as a condition for changing one’s sexual orientation is illicit.
  • General Health and Sanitation: Centre and State Governments have been coordinated to take legitimate measures to give clinical consideration to transsexuals in medical clinics and give them separate public latrines and different offices. Further, they have been coordinated to work separate HIV/Siro-reconnaissance measures for transsexuals.
  • Financial Rights: Centre and State Governments have been approached to give the network different social government assistance plans and to regard the network as socially and monetarily in reverse classes. They have additionally been approached to broaden reservations in instructive establishments and for public arrangements.
  • Disgrace and Public Awareness: These are the broadest headings – Centre and State Governments were approached to find a way to make public attention to more readily help consolidate transsexuals into society and end treatment as untouchables; take measures to recapture their regard and spot in the public eye; and truly address the issues, for example, dread, disgrace, sexual orientation dysphoria, social weight, melancholy, self-destructive inclinations, and social shame.
  • The Court noticed that these assertions are to be perused considering the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment Expert Committee Report on issues identifying with transsexuals.

Directions to Central Government

The Court held that public mindfulness programs were needed to handle disgrace against the transsexual network. It likewise guided the Central and State Governments to make a few strides for the headway of the transsexual network, including Making arrangements for lawful acknowledgment of “third sexual orientation” in all reports Perceiving third sexual orientation people as a “socially and instructively in the reverse class of residents”, qualified for reservations in instructive organizations and public work. Finding a way to outline social government assistance plans for the network.

  1. Award legitimate acknowledgment of their sex personality, for example, male, female, or as third sexual orientation.
  2. Find a way to regard them as socially and instructively in reverse classes of residents and broaden a wide range of reservation in instances of confirmation in instructive foundations and for public arrangements.
  3. Work separate HIV Siro-surveillance Centers since Hijras/Transgenders face a few sexual medical problems.
  4. Truly address the issues being looked by Hijras/Transgenders, for example, dread, disgrace, sexual orientation dysphoria, social weight, despondency, self-destructive inclinations, social shame, and so on and any demand for SRS for pronouncing one’s sex is indecent and unlawful.
  5. Take legitimate measures to give clinical consideration to TGs in the clinics and give them separate public latrines and different offices.
  6. Make strides for surrounding different social government assistance plans for their advancement.
  7. Find a way to make public mindfulness so TGs will feel that they are likewise a vital part of the public activity and be not treated as untouchables.
  8. Take measures to recapture their regard and spot in the general public which once they delighted in our social and public activity.

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