Transgender can perform final rites: NHRC chief

Transgenders must be aware of their rights.

Bengaluru: A transgender who is the first child, should be allowed to perform the final rites of his or her parents as others do, maintained Justice H.L. Dattu, chairperson of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

He was addressing a conference on ‘Human Rights of LGBTQ: Challenges and Way Forward’ organised by NHRC in collaboration with National Law School of India University (NLSIU), Bengaluru.

Justice Dattu noted with pain that as soon as parents come to know that their child is a transgender, they are hesitant to even introduce them to guests. They force them into a corner and make them find shelter outside.

“The LGBTQ has suffered enough and more. Let us say they are also part of society, they are also kith and kin. It is possible only after a change of mindset,” he said.

Justice N Kumar, Professor, Human Rights Chair at NLSIU maintained that it was the British who brought in discrimination of the transgender community in India.

“Before the British came they were respected. With the advent of the British, they were discriminated. They introduced Article 377,” he stated.

Transgenders must be aware of their rights. Mere passing of a law will not change the minds of people, he elaborated.

Akai Padmashali, a transgender rights activist explained on the sidelines that giving an opportunity to transgenders to conduct the funeral rites of their parents is a distant dream.

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