Pakistan’s trans community fears loss of protections as senator launches attack on trans rights bill

Asian Communities, Social Justice

Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of the Jamaat-e-Islami Party, Pakistan’s largest religious party, filed a petition to rescind protections for trans people in the country arguing that Pakistan’s 2018 Transgender Rights Bill went against the country’s Islamic principles. The senator also suggested that people who wish to change their gender marker should undergo a medical test first, though he did not clarify what exactly the test would entail. Previously the senator has also said that “Transgender is an American term, it has no place in Islam, and the legislation regarding the transgender community is against Quran and Sunnah, and it will promote homosexuality”. The bill in question protects a number of rights, including trans people’s rights to be referred to by “self-perceived” gender and to update their ID and existing documents to reflect this.

This article is published in Xtra Magazine.