India Islamic scholar says intersex should have “equal rights”

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A leading Islamic scholar in India has argued that intersex and transgender people in the country are “human beings with equal rights.” The cleric, Faiz Syed, the head of the Islamic Research Center (IRC) had come under fire over a video recently posted on YouTube where he lashed out at the LGBT community.

Now, he is using faith and God to give support to “hijras” and their future in the South Asian country.

The whole controversy started when some believed Syed was attacking hijras, while others believed him to be showing support for their claims to equality.

Although in his public clarification, Syed does not give support to the LGBT community as a whole, he does say that hijras should be given equal rights as “God created them.”

In India, hijras are often ostracized from society while at the same time many Indians believe they have magical powers capable of bringing luck and blessings.

Syed has said he hadn’t meant to imply hijras are “dirty” or “defected.”

“They are human beings with equal rights in society and society should not be treated badly as is done in general with these people. Due to our bad treatment they form a different community,” he said.

He argued that there is a Hadith, a saying of Prophet Mohamed, about intersex people, but “not all of them are included” in an obvious comment to the LGBT community in India whom he does not support.

429Magazine

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