Lawmakers divided over granting citizenship to LGBTI

Kathmandu (Pahichan) March 10 – Lawmakers have agreed to provide citizenship to members of sexual and gender minority mentioning Others (O) category in gender section.

However, issues relating to submission of evidences are not resolved. Lawmakers are divided over the provisions of voluntary announcement of gender identity. Discussions are underway in State Affairs and Good governance Committee of parliament.

In the meeting, lawmakers Yasodha Subedi and Prem Suwal said LGBTI should present a medical certificate to get citizenship as per the identity. Lawmaker Rajendra Shrestha said like male and female LGBTI should be granted the citizenship as per their gender identity. Lawmakers failed to reach any conclusions due to the divisions among lawmakers. Committee Chairman Sashi Shrestha said there would be next meeting to discussion on the issue

The committee has made consensus about providing citizenship to those who change their sexual organ.  Though there are no provisions of changing sexual organs, those who change their sexual organ in abroad can take citizenship as per their changed identity. However, those people should provide the medical documents about the change of sexual organ.

Home Secretary Prem Kumar Rai LGBTI members should present document like the people who change their sexual organs. He said provisions related to providing basic documents while providing citizenship should be mentioned in law.

Nepal’s Supreme Court has already issued directives to provide citizenship to this community as per their gender identity. However, the draft law has a provision that LGBTI members should present medical documents. Lawmakers have registered amendment proposal to ensure citizenship without has obstacles.