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2,802 incidents of violence against women reported in Punjab

* Aurat Foundation says violence against women on rise in urban areas of province

* 1,433 incidents reported in urban areas, 1,327 in rural areas

LAHORE: Some 2,802 incidents of violence against women were reported in Punjab alone during July-December 2010, reveals a bi-annual report released by the Aurat Foundation, a women’s rights organisation.

The foundation’s Lahore Resident Director, Nasreen Zahra, Regional Coordinator Nabeela Shaheen and programme officer Abid Ali at a press conference held Tuesday said that the ratio of incidents involving abduction of women, killing for honour, murder, sexual assault and domestic violence had witnessed an upward pattern in the province, especially in urban areas.

According to the report, 2,802 incidents of violence were reported in the province during the last six months of the year 2010. In these incidents, a total of 3,227 individuals were victimised, of which 3,037 were women and 190 men. Amongst them, the report states, about 1,704 victims were unmarried, 1,156 married, 38 divorced, 60 widows while 269 victims’ marital status could not be ascertained.

The report states that five women were kidnapped, two raped and one committed suicide per day. Eighty-eight percent crimes were reported through FIRs, 3 percent remained unreported and 9 percent crimes were without any solid information.

The report says that 436 women and 45 men were murdered in 385 murder incidents. In 122 incidents of honour killing, 134 women and 23 men were victimised.

In 364 incidents of rape/gang rape, about 373 women were victimised, of whom 268 were unmarried, 77 married, three divorced and two widows. There were 23 women about whom no information was available. Moreover, in seven incidents, close relatives assaulted women in their families, while a total of 81 incidents of sexual assault were reported. In 258 incidents of suicide, 128 resulted from domestic violence. Thirty-one incidents of burning and acid throwing were recorded.

According to the foundation, violence against women was on the rise in Lahore, Faisalabad, Sargodha and Sheikhupura.

The foundation’s officials informed the media that the ratio of incidents of violence against women had reached alarming proportions in urban areas as compared to rural areas, adding that 1,433 such incidents had been recorded in urban areas and 1,327 in rural areas.

Source: Daily Times