Transgender rights bill should be forwarded to CII for review: Ashrafi

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister’s Special Representative for Interfaith Harmony and Middle East Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi on Monday said the Transgender Rights Bill 2018 should be forwarded to the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) for review.

In an exclusive talk with APP, Ashrafi who is also the Chairman of Pakistan Ulema Council said all religious organizations had apprehensions on the certain provisions of this bill and they should be addressed by taking the CII on board as per existing mechanism.

He said Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s Senator Maulna Atta-ur-Rehman, Jamaat-e-Islami Senator Mushtaq Ahmed and others had expressed their reservations on the bill. He was of the view that the best way to deal with issue was to send the aforesaid bill to the CII and it would present its recommendations to remove the clauses which were in contradiction to the Shariah.

The CII Chairman Dr Qibla Ayaz, in a statement, declared that the bill in question was discussed in the council’s meeting on January 17, 2018 and after detailed consultations with the transgender community, National Database and Registration Authority, civil societies and legal and Shariah experts, it came to the conclusion that several provisions of the bill were illegal as well as insufficient to protect the rights of the transgender community.

He lamented that the shortcomings identified by the council in its recommendations were not addressed before the passage of bill.

He proposed that it was essential to bring such comprehensive amendments in the law which includes Shariah provisions, reflection of the Constitution, and understanding of the real problems of transgender community. It was pertinent to mention here that Senator Mushtaq Ahmed has filed a petition in the Federal Shariat Court against the Transgender Rights Bill 2018, claiming it is in contradiction with the Islamic principles of heredity and it would cause complications in the Islamic heredity rules. (APP)