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Gender equality

Sir: Women’s abuse is a well recognised and much discussed issue in Pakistan and yet no solid solution on how to avert this crisis has dawned upon us. A certain section of the country blames the feudalistic thinking of the majority but what seems to stand, in a fundamentally theistic country like Pakistan, between women and their empowerment is an inherent lack of solidarity in the female populace — which, according to Simone de Beauvoir, is akin to a proletariat unwilling to surrender the privileges attached to a symbiotic relationship with the ruling elite “because she is often very well pleased with her role as the Other”. In order to take charge of their circumstances, women need to believe that they indeed have the power, capability and responsibility to do so, which may well have to be a consequence of rejecting the belief of predestination. The women, as a collective union, need to identify themselves as the creators of society itself as it is through their upbringing that the populace and thus the capabilities and future of a country are determined. Once they do away with the shackles of inferiority they have been bound by and realise their true potential in society, then only will they have the capacity to demand rights and treatment equal to that of their opposite sex. Until such ideas are put into play, one is assured to come across the clichéd stories concerning women’s abuse in the daily papers.

ZARA ALI
Lahore

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