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Petition against women’s reserved seats dismissed

LAHORE (March 30 2008): The Lahore High Court (LHC) has dismissed a petition filed against women’s reserved seats, ruling that Article 34 of the Constitution supports steps to ensure full participation of women.

Criticising over the reservation of seats the petitioner, Zubia Ajaz, argued that since there was no bar for women to contest the election on general seats, so reservation of seats for them was contrary to the provisions of Article 25 of the Constitution.The court held that taking in the context of the provisions of the constitution the challenge to increase of seats for women and increase from time to time in its numbers cannot be regarded contrary to the scheme, spirit and rationale of the Constitution.

In the constitutional scheme itself, special provisions for the safeguard of women have been made enabling them to participate and make contribution in all walks of life he court added.

The court observed that it is a matter of common knowledge that the first woman prime minister of this country Benazir Bhuttto and the first Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Fehmida Mirza in the Muslim World belong to our homeland.

As a matter of fact some women members have adorned the houses by winning the election against general seats but that does not mean that the seats cannot be reserved for them in the assemblies.

So far as the contention about their perks and privileges is concerned, it may be observed that once having become members of the assembly they, of course, are entitled to certain perks, privileges and allowances under the law which cannot be considered as mere wastage of resources.
Source: Business Recorder
Date:3/30/2008

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