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Drive begins to create awareness about women protection bills

HYDERABAD: A women awareness campaign to highlight the bills moved in the National Assembly to prevent harassment against women at workplace and the law against domestic violence was launched by Adviser to Sindh Chief Minister Sharmila Farooqi under the directives of President Pakistan People’s Party Women Wing Faryal Talpur in Hyderabad on Wednesday.

Addressing a press conference after meeting a large number of PPP women leaders and workers hailing from Hyderabad at the Circuit House, the adviser said the campaign would be continued in all the districts of the province with the participation of the women PPP workers. Farooqi added that Faryal Talpur desires that the awareness campaign should be proactive and aggressive in poor and backward areas, where women do not even know their basic rights and she herself would supervise progress of the campaign. Sharmila Farooqi said President Asif Ali Zardari, while addressing a joint session of parliament on September 20, 2008 stated: “I request the government to do its utmost not just provide protection to women, but to empower them at every step of the long road to their just entitlement as full citizens of their state.

We cannot reverse the decades of social backwardness just by one stroke of the pen, but we can and will turn this tide slowly and surely.” Following the PPP manifesto and the vision of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto of women empowerment Faryal Talpur desired that PPP women leaders and workers should spread awareness at grassroots level among women according to the new laws regarding protection against domestic violence and harassment at workplace, Sharmila Farooqi added. She noted that the tabling in the National Assembly of Domestic Violence Bill (Prevention & Protection) and amendment in CrPC and PPC on sexual harassment against women at workplace was due to the untiring efforts by the PPP Women Wing Chairperson Faryal Talpur.

Elaborating the proposed law, Farooqi said after the Senate of Pakistan passes those two bills, they would become an Act and part of Criminal Procedure Code. She maintained that under the new law, if a man victimised his wife and tried to evict her from his house, then the court could oust him from his house while his wife could live in that house. He will also be bound to incur medical and living expenditures of his wife and children until the court further decides in this regard. In case of sexual harassment at workplace, a man would be sentenced for three years of imprisonment and fine of Rs 0.5 million, she added.
Source: The News
Date:12/17/2009

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