The Indian Navy fired a sailor to undergo a sex-change operation last year, which found him guilty of breach of service rules. Manish Giri, a naval sailor, had undergone sex-change surgery in August in a hospital in Mumbai while he was on leave.
“The Indian Navy has unloaded Manish Giri, a naval sailor, evoking the clause of” service most needed “under naval regulations,” the Navy said in a statement. He stated that the seafarer who underwent a “sexual reassignment surgery” during his leave was administratively discharged from the service.
“The individual chose to undergo an irreversible reassignment of their gender on their own, while on leave, the deliberate change of their gender status relative to that for which they were recruited at the time of their admission,” he added.
Giri was sent to a naval facility in Visakhapatnam. “He broke the recruitment regulations and eligibility criteria for his employment as a sailor in the Indian Navy,” said the Navy.
It stated that existing services rules and regulations do not allow seafarers to continue to work because of their changed sex status, health status and resulting “employability restrictions”.
According to the Hindustan Times, the navy was unaware of the operation until the sailor returned from three weeks of prolonged vacations and became ill with a urinary tract infection. When the superiors of Giri came to know the operation, they sent her to psychiatric treatment in a naval hospital.
“I was kept in a men’s psych ward for six months, the experience was like being in prison,” he said. “When the doctors could not prove I was mentally ill, they finally let me.”
“I used to work as an engineer and this forced me to be on board, but my new identity as a woman forced me to stay away from the ship and work at the base,” said Giri. She was removed from the seaman’s post and placed in the administrative wing.
The sailor also said she would explore all legal options to get her job back. “I will fight until I receive justice. I am consulting my lawyers and soon I will move,” he added. He also plans to write Prime Minister Narendra Modi to demand justice.
“I am as much a citizen of India as any other citizen of the country, I have the same rights as others, I can always pull the trigger of a gun and shoot the enemy, why am I not fit enough to serve my country?
I’m going to go to the Supreme Court if I have to fight for my rights, “he told India Today. The Indian Navy sent the case to the Defense Ministry to advise him on what to do.