Gender identity refers to an individual’s self-identification as a man, woman, transgender or other identified category, like intersex.1 When you face any trouble with officials or people who want you to prove the gender you identify with, you have the option of showing them the documents given below.
Option 1: Affidavit or Undertaking
An affidavit/undertaking is a document which contains facts written by you such as your desired new name, gender you identify with, etc. You will have to verify the affidavit/undertaking with a Notary or Oath Commissioner who will stamp and sign it, thereby making it a valid legal document which can be used as proof. For example, you can use the affidavit/undertaking not only while changing your name but also while getting an Aadhar card, opening a bank account, getting a SIM Card, etc. The affidavit/undertaking will be a document that you can use to prove facts such as the medical procedures you have undergone and the gender you identify with, etc.
Option 2: Medical Certificate
If you have undergone any sex-change operation, you can show the medical certificate from the hospital as proof of gender change. The details of any medical procedures you have undergone can also be written in the affidavit/undertaking so that you have a legal and notarized document as proof.
Option 3: Name change in Gazette
If you have changed your name to reflect the gender you associate with and you have successfully published it in the Central/State Gazette, then you can take a copy of the Gazette notification as proof. Gazette notifications itself can be considered proof and it is not necessary that you have to notarize them.
No one can subject you to any form of gender verification, where you are harassed or touched inappropriately in private or in public. This is why the documents given above are important proof of your gender identity. If you face any form of harassment, you should file a complaint with the police and take the assistance of a lawyer during this process.
- Navtej Singh Johar and Ors. vs. Union of India (UOI) and Ors. (2018)10 SCC 1 Para (5).