Hindus, Sikhs Demand Funeral Pyres in Britain

January 11, 2006

Source: Yahoo! News

Wire Service: IANS


On January 11, 2006 the Indo-Asian News Service reported, "An organisation here plans to petition the European Court of Human Rights to ensure that dead bodies of Hindus and Sikhs are cremated on traditional funeral pyres instead of in electric crematoriums. Britain has a large minority of Hindus and Sikhs, but arrangements for the deceased within the communities are different from what is ordained by the scriptures. There are instances of families taking the bodies to India for cremation according to proper rituals. The Anglo-Asian Friendship Society based in Gosforth, near Newcastle, is approaching the Newcastle City Council and the European Court of Human Rights to demand traditional funeral arrangements for Hindus and Sikhs. Davender Ghai, president of the charity, told the local media: 'Many Hindus and Sikhs in England object to mechanic gas-fuelled cremation but, without any alternative, reluctantly comply. Now our legal team is preparing a case under the 1998 Human Rights Act and may plead directly to the European Court of Human Rights.'"