New Delhi, May 4: The Arvind Kejriwal government in Delhi has begun the process of setting up a transgender welfare board. A report in The Times of India said that Social Welfare Minister in the Delhi government, Rajendra Pal Gautam, has written to his department to form a committee. The committee would conduct a study on the condition of transgenders in the city, he said in his letter. “The committee is likely to be set up within a week and will include two representatives of the transgender community, officials from social welfare department and representatives from organisations working at different levels for the welfare of the transgenders,” Gautam said on Thursday. “The AAP government is sensitive to the rights of the people living on the margins of society. We want not only to protect the human and constitutional rights of the transgenders, but also give them a better life,” he said.

The panel will gather information about their education, health schemes, employment and their constitutional rights. “The Transgender Welfare Board will incorporate the recommendations of the committee in its report. The government will then initiate schemes for their development and give them equality in society,” Gautam said, adding that the board will be set up in six months’ time. Delhi follows close on the heels of Maharashtra which, earlier this year, revived its plan to set up such a board. The state government even made a provision of Rs 5 crore for the same.

The Supreme Court had identified transgender people as “third gender” in 2014. NGOs claim that transgenders continue to be trapped in an identity crisis.