Feb 23, 2022

4 Things You Need to Know About Transgender Rights and ID Proof in India

Identification documents play a major role in facilitating your rights such as the right to healthcare, education, etc. and are also important for day-to-day activities such as applying for a SIM Card or a bank account, etc.


Did you know that…

  • …it is your right to get identification documents recognizing the gender you want to be associated with?


Identity documents in India only recognize 3 categories which are “male”, “female” and “third gender” (transgender) . If you come across any forms or procedures which do not give you the option of choosing “third gender” (transgender) , then you can:

  • Ask the authorities what options you have
  • Take the help of lawyers, NGO’s to assist you in obtaining the identification proof
  • Carry a copy of proof of your gender identity.

  • …there are certain documents you can use as proof of the gender you want to be associated with?


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:

  • Affidavit or Undertaking: Documents which contain 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 to make it a valid legal document which can be used as proof. 
  • Medical Certificate: If you have undergone any sex-change operation, you can show the medical certificate from the hospital as proof of gender change. 
  • 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.

  • …you cannot be harassed or touched inappropriately under the garb of gender verification?


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. 


  • …there are some commonly accepted government identity documents that recognize three gender categories?


Commonly accepted government identity documents where options for Male, Female and Transgender are available include PAN Card, Aadhar Card, Passport and Voter ID.

The central form for Driving License, Learner’s License and Ration Card do not have options for gender but some States may have the option.