Image source: Thehindu.com
A group of UN experts has criticised Sri Lanka's requirement that those who die of Covid-19 be cremated, even it goes against a family's religious beliefs, and warned that decisions based on "discrimination and aggressive nationalism" could incite hatred and violence.
The experts, who are part of the Special Procedures of the U.N. Human Rights Council, said in a statement Monday that rule amounts to a human rights violation.
"We deplore the implementation of such public health decisions based on discrimination, aggre nationalism and ethnocentrism amounting to persecution of Muslims and other minorities in the country," the experts said.
The WHO as well as Sri Lankan medical groups have said that burial of those who died of Covid-19 is safe. More than 70% of Sri Lankans are Buddist, a faith in which cremation is common. But 9% of people of Sri Lanka are Muslims and many say cremation goes against their religion beliefs.