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Call for implementation of laws on violence against women

UMERKOT: Speakers at a seminar on Friday called for the implementation of anti-violence laws and said that the lack of implementation was responsible for the increasing number of cases of violence against women.

They were speaking at an event titled “Rights of women, violence against them and the role of youth’ organised by a local welfare organisation in Umerkot.

The assistant deputy commissioner of Umerkot, Tazmeezuddin Khehro, said that low literacy rate, poverty and ignorance of the existing anti-violence laws contributed to increasing violence against women.

He said that unequal distribution of resources, unemployment and illiteracy had put the people under incredible stress and they harmed others to relieve themselves of stress and anxiety.

The district coordinator for Unicef Pakistan, Parkash Piragani, said that in 1996 Pakistan became a signatory to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women adopted by the UN general assembly in 1979.

However, he said, the country did little about implementation of the convention.

Mr Piragani said that the government had been advised to take preventive steps, for providing shelter, compensation and legal response to victims and educate the police, judiciary, media, bureaucrats and civil society organisations on the subject, but unfortunately the state did not pay heed to it.

He said that these factors affected the incidence of violence but government institutions were unaware of the causes, prevalence, impact and solutions of these issues.

Social activist Geeta said that violence occurred more in joint family systems, adding that for women who were victims of domestic violence divorce was a better option than a life-long trauma. The district manager of Thardeep Rural Development Programme, Ali Nawaz Nizamani, said that women should raise their voice against domestic violence, acid attacks, sexual harassment, psychological suppression, discrimination at home and work place, and come forward and plead their own case.

The speakers also demanded justice for the six-year-old who had been a victim of criminal assault earlier this week in Ghulam Nabi Shah and also took out a rally against the unfortunate incident.