Speakers at seminar urge equal status for transgender persons

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Special Report

ISLAMABAD: Speakers at an awareness seminar Tuesday stressed the need for providing equal status to the transgender community.
The seminar titled ‘Elimination of Violence Against Transgender and Implementation of Transgender Rights Law at the grass-roots level’ was organised by the People’s Development Foundation, Pakistan Students Association (Canada) and Wajood Foundation. Human right activists, lawyers, journalists and law enforcers attended the event.
PSA Canada President Asman Bhutta and Secretary Ujala said via video link that the purpose of the seminar was to get the support of all sections of society so that the violence and exploitation against the transgender community could be ended.
They stressed the need to create a network that would work to prevent incidents of violence and promote equality at the community level. Bhutta said the association has helped in enlisting the names of 800 individuals in Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) in collaboration with the Peoples Development Foundation. He said such collaborations were imperative for ensuring the provision of rights to transgender people. He stressed the need to include subjects related to gender identity in the curriculum.
Wajood Foundation Programme Director Ayesha Mughal informed the audience that the law on transgender rights was passed by Parliament in 2018 and was enacted in 2020. She referenced the guidelines issued by National Commission for Human Rights regarding transgender rights.
Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Additional Commissioner Qurat-ul-Ain apprised the participants about the administration’s efforts in imparting education, training and awareness and ensured the appointment of a transgender representative at the special desk.
Ministry of Human Rights Transgender rights expert Mariyum Sharif highlights the Human Right Commission’s steps taken for the provision of transgender rights and the implementation of relevant laws to facilitate them.