Current Affairs April 2015

Rajya Sabha passes The Rights of Transgender Persons Bill, 2014

Rajya Sabha on 24 April 2015 unanimously passed The Rights of Transgender Persons Bill, 2014 by voice vote.

It should be noted that it was a private member’s bill moved by DMK MP Tiruchi Shiva to protect the rights of transgender persons.

It is the first private members bill to be passed in 46 years. In the past, 14 Private Members’ Bills have been passed. Now, the bill will go to the Lok Sabha for the passage.

Key features of the Bill

  • Seeks to provide framework for the formulation and implementation of a comprehensive national policy for ensuring overall development of the transgender persons and their welfare.
  • Two percent reservation in primary, secondary and higher education and in government jobs.
  • Establishment of Employment Exchange, National and State Commissions for Trasngender Persons and Special Transgender Rights Courts.
  • No child who is transgender will be separated from his or her parents on the grounds of being a transgender except on an order of competent court.
  • Penalty for hate speech against transgender persons includes imprisonment extending upto one year and with fine.

This bill will help government take necessary steps in order to ensure that transgender persons enjoy the right to life with dignity and to personal liberty guaranteed by the Constitution.

It should be noted that 29 nations and leading democracies in the world including US, UK, Canada, France, Australia, Italy and Singapore have legislations protecting rights of transgender persons.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates India’s Healthcare Tourism Portal

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24 April 2015 inaugurated India’s Healthcare Tourism Portal at the ‘SAAARC Trade Mart’ in the Global Exhibition on Services (GES).

It was inaugurated on the occasion of three-day Global Exhibition on Services (GES) that commenced on 23 April, 2015 in Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.

Key facts about Healthcare Tourism Portal

  • The portal is developed by the Union Government’s Department of Commerce and the Services Export Promotion Council (SEPC).
  • It is a comprehensive one-point information site that covers hospital and travel-related information in India.
  • Presently, it covers 124 accredited medical facilities. It includes 93 medical centers, 30 Ayurveda and Wellness centers and 1 special category center.
  • Among these medical facilities 74 facilities are located in Tier I cites and the rest are in Tier II cities.
  • These covered accredited medical facilities on portal are easily locatable. It is also easy to find by search options by location, medical specialty, key procedures, language options etc.
  • Details such as costs related to treatment in hospitals, visa and travel formalities, tariff options on stay etc are also mentioned on the portal.