Follow SC Guidelines, Don’t Drive Transgenders To Courts For Certificates: Karnataka HC Tells Universities

Follow SC Guidelines, Don’t Drive Transgenders To Courts For Certificates: Karnataka HC Tells Universities

Karnataka HC directs universities to adhere to SC guidelines for name and gender changes in certificates, avoiding court involvement.

PTIUpdated: Saturday, January 20, 2024, 02:09 PM IST
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The High Court of Karnataka has directed educational institutions to follow the Supreme Court guidelines and not force people to approach courts for change in name and gender in educational certificates.

The court gave the direction while allowing a petition by a transgender seeking a fresh post-graduation certificate from the Manipal University with his new male name.

Noting that there were “innumerable such instances awaiting consideration before universities/educational institutions,” the HC said, “It is observed that it would be appropriate for said authorities to process applications for change of name and gender upon receipt of requests keeping in mind ratio laid down by Supreme Court in National Legal Services Authority's case and this Court in Christina Lobo's case instead of driving all applicants to Court for securing directions.” Vihaan Peethambar approached the High Court with a petition that was heard by Justice Ravi V Hosmani and disposed on January 5.

Senior counsel Jayna Kothari appearing for Vihaan submitted that he had completed PG MS Communication course in the university in 2008 and was awarded the certificate and marksheet under the name ‘Jyothi Peethambar’.

Though female by birth, he underwent gender reassignment surgeries in 2015 and changed his gender to male and name to ‘Vihaan Peethambar.’ He obtained fresh PAN, Aadhar, Voter ID, passport and degree certificates in his name.

However, the Manipal university rejected his request in 2017 stating that the change was only possible within a short duration after the certificate was first issued.

The High Court, citing the two judgements, said guidelines were issued by the Supreme Court for such cases.

Allowing the petition, it said, “Petitioner is permitted to file representation appending original marks cards and degree certificate to Registrar of respondent no.1 - University, within a period of four weeks. Upon receipt of the same, respondent no.1 - University shall consider it for taking action as per the ratio laid down by Supreme Court in NLSA's case and Christina Lobo's case within four weeks thereafter.”

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