Chennai: In a first for the nation, Tamil Nadu has issued a government order publishing a glossary of Tamil terms to address LGBTQIA+ community members. Nudged by the Madras high court to do so, the government has also made it mandatory for all forums, including the media, to address them only by using the specific terms published in the gazette.
The order dated August 20 was passed following a suggestion made by Justice N Anand Venkatesh to address persons belonging to the LGBTQIA+ community with due dignity. The suggestion was made during the hearing of a plea moved by a lesbian couple alleging police harassment.
When the plea came up for hearing on Monday, counsel for the state produced a copy of the order issued by the social welfare and women empowerment department in the court.
“It is made clear that all concerned, including the press, must take note of the notification published in the gazette on August 20 and address persons belonging to LGBTQIA+ community by using only the notified terms wherever required,” said Justice Anand Venkatesh, recording the order.
The judge directed the state to file a status report and adjourned the hearing to September 2.