(G.N.S) Dt. 29
With additional recruitments, their strength at stations now goes up to 28
The number of people from the transgender community employed at Kochi metro stations has gone up from 23 to 28. They are among the 700-odd workforce deployed by Kudumbasree women’s self-help group (SHG) at 18 stations.
Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) had signed a contract with Kudumbasree on training and providing manpower for housekeeping, issuing tickets, and to help commuters.
Back in June 2017, when the metro operations began, KMRL became the first government-owned company in India to formally appoint transgenders in its workforce. The aim was to give them a decent opportunity to work and to bring about a change in the societal mindset through direct interaction with them. Over a dozen of the first batch of 23 transgender recruits had quit citing various reasons, but more members of the community were recruited in the second round of selection.
The better educated in the transgender community have been posted at ticket counters, while the rest have been deputed for housekeeping, customer relations, parking management, and gardening. Those appointed as team leaders are paid up to ₹15,000 per month, while others are paid between 9,000 and 13,000. They also get a weekly paid off-day.
Considering their difficulty in obtaining accommodation and the high rentals in the city, the metro agency has arranged stay for a few of them at a hostel in Kakkanad. Just like the Kudumbasree’s women workforce, they are trained in soft and technical skills. They were appointed after a written test and interview conducted jointly by the two agencies. Around 41,000 candidates appeared for the test.
(G.N.S) Dt. 29