Sunday, October 2, 2022

Transgender bill: Law minister rejects ‘baseless propaganda’

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ISLAMABAD: Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar has rejected ‘baseless propaganda’ against the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act and said that misconceptions were created regarding the law as it was repugnant to Islamic injunctions, ARY News reported on Thursday.

While addressing a press conference alongside Adviser to PM for Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan Qamar Zaman Kaira in Islamabad today, Azam Nazeer Tarar said that transgender persons are also human beings and they have rights.

Some complaints came forth regarding a provision of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act after the parliament passed the bill two years ago.

READ: SHARIA COURT HEARS CHALLENGE TO TRANSGENDER RIGHTS LAW

The law minister said that there is always a chance of flaws in law and misuse of it. He added that it is the state’s responsibility to give rights to transgender persons but ‘baseless propaganda’ was being made against the law.

He added that he also held a meeting with Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) supremo Maulana Fazlur Rehman in which the JUI-F chief presented his recommendations besides tasking Kamran Murtaza to review the concerning provisions.

The federal law minister said that misinformation regarding laws could not be permitted by the government. He said that the law declared the sexual harassment of transgender persons a crime and penalties were set against them.

READ: JI TURNS TO FEDERAL SHARIAT COURT AGAINST ‘TRANSGENDER RIGHTS BILL 2018’

Tarar added that the law protects transgender persons’ rights to inheritance, education, health, and employment.

Qamar Zaman Kaira said that they support amendments to the transgender bill presented by Senator Mushtaq Ahmed to stop its misuse. He added that Senator Ahmed’s amendments will further strengthen the law.

Earlier, Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of Jamat-e-Islami (JI) had filed a petition in the Federal Shariat Court against the Transgender Rights Bill 2018, claiming it’s in contradiction with the Islamic principles of heredity.

The JI leader argued that the bill would cause complications in Islamic heredity rules.

The petition, filed by the JI senator, would be persecuted by Lawyer Imran Shafique Advocate. Senate’s Human rights Committee had debated the bill in its September 5 session.

In the session, the JI leader suggested that if someone files a gender change request in NADRA, they must undergo a medical test first. The bill has given individuals the right to change their gender identity, 30,000 people have applied to NADRA to change their gender, the JI senator said.

The authority to identify one’s gender should be with the medical board and not with the individual, Mushtaq Ahmed said.

The JI senator claimed that the bill is a contradiction with Islamic hereditary principles. Chairman Federal Shariat Court inquired whether the Islamic Ideology Council was consulted when passing the law. The senator said that the council was not consulted.

The Human Rights Committee opposed the amends presented by the senator, saying the matter is sub-judice and should not be tampered with.

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