Sri Lanka ends forced cremations of COVID-19 victims


Sri Lankan municipal staff carry a physique of a COVID-19 sufferer for cremation in Colombo. (FILE)

Amidst mounting worldwide criticism, Sri Lanka has revised a controversial necessary order to cremate the our bodies of COVID-19 victims, which denied minority communities, together with Muslims, their spiritual rights. The authorities on Thursday revised a gazette notification issued in April final 12 months. The new notification has allowed each burials and cremations. 

For 10 months, Muslim and Christian minorities within the nation and worldwide rights teams have been lobbying the federal government to finish the coverage of compelled cremations. 

The authorities was resisting calls to permit burials citing well being considerations. It cited the opinion of some specialists who claimed that the burial of COVID-19 victims would contaminate the water desk thereby spreading the pandemic additional.

The nation had earlier come beneath intense criticism from rights teams, together with the UNHRC, over the cremation order. They stated it didn’t respect the spiritual emotions of the victims and their relations, particularly of the Muslims, Catholics and a few Buddhists. The cremation of our bodies is forbidden in Islam.

The choice to finish compelled cremations adopted the go to of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan. The Muslim minority leaders, who met Khan, stated the choice to permit burials was linked to Sri Lanka looking for the help of the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) on the ongoing UN Human Rights Council session in Geneva. 

Sri Lanka is because of face a recent decision, which might pin the island to realize reconciliation via a reputable accountability mechanism over its human rights document. Pakistan is a member of the OIC. The OIC nations had appealed in Geneva when the periods started to reverse the compelled cremations choice. 

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