K Prithika Yasini’s childhood dream to don the Khaki uniform was finally fulfilled, as she joined the Tamil Nadu police force as trainee sub-inspector. The 25-year-old is the first transgender person to be appointed by the TN police. [Picture Credit: NDTV]
Prithika reported for her duty on Sunday, 2 April, in Dharmapuri, where she has been posted after the completion of one-year intensive training in Chennai. She was among the 1,028 new SI recruits who have been inducted into the Tamil Nadu Police Force.
Prithika needs to serve as trainee sub-inspector for a period of six months after which she will be posted as full-fledged sub-inspector.
The journey so far has not been easy for Prithika. She was born as a boy, Pradeep Kumar, and became a girl after a sex-change surgery
Five years ago, she left Salem, her hometown, and came to Chennai. Her initial application for joining the Tamil Nadu police force was first rejected as the state police recruitment board did not have a third-gender category. Further, there is no concessional cut-off in written exam, physical examination or interview for transgender people. However, her determination paid off. She fought a relentless battle, filed a series of writ petitions which resulted in examination cut-off marks being lowered from 28.5 to 25 in her case. She also qualified in all physical tests. Only in the 100 metres dash, she was late by one second, but that was accepted.
Finally, in 2015, a Madras High Court Bench ordered the Tamil Nadu Uniformed Services Recruitment Board, which is in-charge of selecting the personnel for the state police force, to include members of the transgender community under ‘third category’. The judges also called for the creation of a separate category for transgender people in employment. This was a benchmark ruling and will have far-reaching benefits for the third gender in India.