PESHAWAR: Condemning the increasing murders of women in honour-related cases in parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, an organisation working for women’s rights, has urged the government to introduce the domestic violence bill in the provincial assembly to curb the heinous crime.
Speaking at a news conference at the Peshawar Press Club on Tuesday, Aurat Foundation’s resident director Shabeena Ayaz demanded of the KP government to focus its attention on legislation against the honour killings so violence in the society could be controlled.
She said KP was the only province wherein the bill was still not passed. She disclosed that every year more than 14,000 women were killed in Pakistan in name of honour, domestic violence and other cases, and KP was on top in that regard.
Mr Ayaz said every year the foundation shared and published the data about the victims of honour killings, domestic violence and others, and assured the media the organisation would very soon collect the data for the current year and would bring it before the media.
She said currently 101 million children around the globe were out of school and half of them were girls, adding the girls’ enrolment percentage in Pakistan was 44 per cent compared to 56 per cent boys.
Ms Ayaz said that girls’ enrollment rate dropped drastically after the primary level in both public and private institutions, adding education was a fundamental human right.
Saima Munir, another representative of the foundation, said it was need of the hour to pass a law in KP province to ensure protection for the women against violence.
She said such cases should be decided in courts and not by panchaiyat or jirga.
She said millions of children, especially girls, had to say goodbye to education due to the growing incidents of violence, which had impacted the right to education for all. She informed the reporters that out of 24.02 million out of school children 52.3 per cent were girls.
Ms Munir said the Aurat Foundation, through its 16-day campaign against gender-based violence, would create awareness among the people, and advocate for giving education opportunities to all children in Pakistan, particularly in KP.
She maintained that the KP women faced various challenges, including domestic violence, early marriages, honour killings and other problems. She said efforts should be made to change a specific mindset regarding the women in the province.
Published in Dawn November 30th, 2016