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National

July 5, 2017

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Senate’s HR body to take up transgender rights bill tomorrow

Senate’s HR body to take up transgender rights bill tomorrow

ISLAMABAD: The Human Rights Committee of the Senate will take up tomorrow (Thursday) draft legislation to lift the transgender community from its present state of sheer degradation marked by a total denial of basic and human rights.

“Categorised neither as male nor female the transgender are one of the most marginalised communities facing social exclusion and extreme discrimination while basic facilities of education, employment and health are almost non-existent for them besides being the butt of jokes and ridicule of the society at large,” said secretary General Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians Senator Farhatullah Babar while talking to media after attending a meeting held Wednesday in the office f the Commissioner for Children set up by Wafaqi Mohtasib Salman Faruqui to protect the rights and freedoms of transgender community.

The meeting was attended among others by Senator Rubina Khalid, representatives of transgender community from different parts of the country, reps of NGOs concerned with transgender issues and officials.

Farhatullah Babar said that this situation must be reversed. ”The Constitution not only guarantees under Article 25 equality before law to all citizens but also explicitly forbids under other articles discrimination on the basis of sex,” he said.

He said that the Supreme Court has already declared that eunuchs could not be disenfranchised under any law and welcomed the decision last week to issue a passport to a transgender with gender identification ‘X’ as a positive step in the right direction.

He said that the proposed legislation seeks to recognise transgender, prohibits discrimination against them, protects their fundamental rights and confers upon them the right to self-perceived gender identity and expression.

  Babar also appreciated Wafaqi Mohtasib Salman Faruqui for taking this initiative even if it is not specifically mentioned in the charter of duties of the Mohtasib’s office and expressed the hope that it will greatly facilitate the job of the Senate Committee and Parliament.

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