My mom has no brother. They are 3 sisters. So when my maternal grandfather died the 3 sisters cremated him. This was in the early 90s. They didn’t pay any heed to what the society had to say.
Yesterday when former prime minister Late Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s foster daughter Namita Kaul Bhattacharya lit his pyre she again made a very strong statement; a daughter has as much right in performing the last rites of her parents as the son has. Yes, its not going to be easy. Any change will meet with opposition. The so-called puritans will raise questions about beliefs, moksha, gotra and so on but if a daughter stays strong and “defies” all this she can do everything for her parents including performing the last rites. I have told my children when I die both my son and daughter will together perform whatever little rituals are there ( I don’t believe in elaborate puja and rituals) because my love for them has and will always be the same.