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Violence against women reached frightening height in Punjab: Aurat Foundation

LAHORE (November 13 2008): Violence against women has reached a frightening height in Punjab during the third quarter of the year (July-September) as the cases reported during this period have doubled that of second quarter. 1,592 cases took place across the province during the third quarter of the year.

The total number of incidents in the first quarter were 546 and in the second quarter 828 were reported. Aurat Foundation, an NGO working for women’s rights revealed in a press conference at the Lahore Press Club the figures on Wednesday.

‘This data is collected from the national and local newspapers,’ it said. The NGO also tried to gather the data of cases of violence from state institutions and departments like police, hospitals and government-run shelters. But, they refused to provide the data on the pretext of being confidential and sensitive.

The highest numbers of cases reported during this quarter were of abduction. 508 cases of abduction, 242 of murder, 127 of rape, 137 of suicide, 120 of physical injuries, 100 of gang rap, 95 of torture, 35 of attempted suicide, 31 of sexual assaults, 21 of honour killing, 13 of acid throwing and burning, eight of attempted murder and 155 other cases of violence, the NGO disclosed.

The FIRs of 490 abduction cases were registered while in six cases, FIRs could not be registered. In 439 cases there was no information available about the abductor, while in 36 cases local residents were found involved in abduction.

Further, in 66 murder cases, the motive was domestic dispute. Husbands were reported carry highest numbers of murder (76). In 67 murder cases no information about the murderer was available. The Foundation demanded that it is the utmost need of the time to curb the menace of violence against women.

The representatives of the NGO said that the only way to curb the rising violence against women was to strengthen the role of civil society in all spheres of life and to lobby women parliamentarians and women councillors to raise their voices in their respective houses.

They said that it was also important to develop or strengthen existing district level women’s watch groups against violence to compel the local administration and police to take all necessary measures of drawing an end to the violent crime against women.

Further, they said that the availability of such data would also enable the academia, researchers, policy-makers and development practitioners to further analyse and draw conclusions about the prevalence and nature of gender-based violence and to support the formulation and devising of effective policies, laws and strategies against the crime.
Source: Business Recorder
Date:11/13/2008

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