Nepal | October 20, 2020

Allow LGBTIQ people to join govt jobs, say lawmakers

Jagdishor Panday
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Kathmandu, June 30

Lawmakers today said lesbian, gay, bisexual,transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people should be given opportunities in civil service, police service and military service.

As per the Civil Servant Act, only males and females can serve the nation. The Federal Civil Servant Bill that has been registered in the Parliament also does not mention LGBTIQ people when it comes to government jobs.

During a discussion at the Parliamentary State Affairs and Good Governance Committee on the Federal Civil Servant Bill, the lawmakers stressed that the bill should be in line with the spirit of the constitution that has guaranteed equal rights for LGBTIQ people.

Nepali Congress Lawmaker Dilendra Prasad Badu urged the government and Minister of Federal Affairs and General Administration Lal Babu Pandit to seriously consider the issue. “Why can’t people from LGBTIQ get entry into the civil service?” he questioned.

“The bill should address these concerns.”

Neither the government recognises LGBTIQ groups nor there’s any provision for reservation for them when it comes to government jobs.

Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal Lawmaker Raj Kishor Yadav said the bill should also include people from third gender.

“What if they want to serve the nation?” he questioned, adding, “We can’t prohibit them from entering the government service,” said Yadav.

Badu added that since the constitution has recognised them and they have also acquired citizenship certificates or passports they should not be prohibited from joining the civil service.

“Otherwise, they might move to the court for their rights,” he said.

Article 18 of the constitution states that the state shall not discriminate citizens on the grounds of origin, religion, race, caste, tribe, sex, economic condition, language, religion, ideology or on other grounds.

The House committee’s Chair Shashi Shrestha said it was a serious issue requiring more discussion before reaching a conclusion.

Pinky Gurung, president of the Blue Diamond Society, told THT that they should not be discriminated on the grounds of sex.

“The constitution has recognised us. There are also other laws for us. But we need a job for living.

The government has not allocated quotas or recognised us in the government service,” Gurung said.

A version of this article appears in print on July 01, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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