The Transgender Rights Bill was recently discussed in Parliament once again after Jamaat-e-Islami’s (JI) Senator Mushtaq pushed for the inclusion of certain amendments to the Bill. Journalist Tanzila Mazhar was joined by trans activist Aisha Mughal on the Naya Daur TV show ‘Insights with Tanzila Mazhar’ to discuss the misconceptions that are stirring up on social media as a result of this debate.
Every Act that is passed, also has a set of rules that are also passed, so the law was passed in 2018, but then a rulebook was also released in 2020
Rule 3 pertains to ‘amending the existing CNIC’, and mentions that any transgender can change their CNIC to obtain an X card
2009 allowed transpeople to get their own ID cards that recognized their identities as neither man nor woman
In 2018, the Act granted transpeople their essential rights to education, dignity and employment
Aisha says that now people are using it for political gains and conflating it with homosexuality, which is an act of cruelty towards the trans community
When speaking about Senator Mushtaq and his objections to the term ‘transgender’, as well as his claims that allowing trans rights will lead to validating the LGBTQ movement, Aisha said it appeared that either the Senator was severely misinformed, or that he hadn’t read the rulebook, and said that she had urged him to read it during a session of the senate on the 5th of September as well.
She pointed out that according to the rulebook, a person could only get their gender changed to ‘X’ on a Nadra CNIC, not to a man or woman, as stated by the Senator, thereby negating their concerns that man would be passing off as women and vice versa
Statistics quoted by the JI were not verified by the CNIC issuing body NADRA, and Aisha said there was more verification needed
She said that if anybody actually had changed their gender from a man to woman or vice versa, then it could not have been through this law, as the terms of the law don’t make any such provisions
She urged everybody to read the rules and not engage in misinformation without doing their own due research first