SIALKOT: “The government is firmly committed to promote culture of respect of human rights in the country. In particular, it understands that the society cannot progress unless and until women dedicate their maximum potentials and capacity towards the process of national development.
The government therefore has taken several steps to encourage women’s participation in economic, social and political activities. It has also legislated to protect women from gender based discriminations and violence at domestic level and saving them from harassment at workplace. It is however necessary that women and girls in need have access to the service delivery channels and get their grievances addressed in an expedited way,” Dr Asif Tufail District Co-ordination officer expressed these views while addressing a seminar to celebrate the “International day for human rights 2016” organized by Baidarie Sialkot at Social Welfare Complex Sialkot here Wednesday evening.
Dr Asif Tufail appreciated the efforts of Baidarie for remaining focused and specific through preceding 23 years of its life while making efforts aiming at protection and promotion of basic human rights in society. He said Baidarie was doing very useful work for raising awareness of laws aiming at provision of gender justice, promoting adult literacy, improving maternal healthcare in the rural areas, providing legal aid and psychosocial counselling support to the survivors of gender based violence and making strenuous efforts to increase access for jobless women to options and spaces for generating income in gender responsive environment.
Dr Asif Tufail held this kind of interventions as complementary and supportive to the efforts of government for socio-economic empowerment of the poor communities particularly the women and offered all sorts of possible help for promoting the work of the organisation.
Addressing the audience, Professor Arshid Mehmood Mirza, Executive Director, Baidarie said that while making efforts for empowerment of the social segments which stand excluded in social and economic terms, fostering culture of respect for human rights has always been the prime focus of the organisation.
Alluding to the plight of women workers in the informal sector of economy he described the former home based hand women soccer stitchers as the worst sufferers in Sialkot. He said the organisation for the last six years had been providing pragmatic inputs to equip those women with knowledge of workers’ rights, organising them into capacitated groups, imparting them with locally marketable income generating skills, linking them with the job opportunities in the formal sector and evolving them into entrepreneurs. Professor Mirza also descried the organisational initiatives for evolving social deterrence against extreme acts of violence against women, increasing maternal and new born healthcare and promotion of education and literacy in women & girls.
Hina Noureen President Baidarie highlighted the importance of respect of the basic human rights of women. She said “Islam gives immense importance to the rights of women but unfortunately we have strong inclination towards professing the teachings of the religion vigorously but ignoring them badly when these need to be practised in everyday life. Resultantly, the spirit of the actual principles of Islam remains missed out in our social behaviours and conduct. We should acknowledge the women rights and their importance so that our society may progress providing level playing field for all the social segments without any consideration of gender etc,” said Hina.
Speaking on the occasion Sohail Mehmood, Executive District Officer (CD) Sialkot highlighted the role of women in the society and emphasised that without active participation of women in all the spheres of economic, social, political and cultural life the society could not even dream to make balanced progress.
Muzamal Yaar, District Officer Social Welfare Department Sialkot shared the details of the governmental efforts for increasing social protection for women and children in difficult situations. Sajid Iqbal Khan Advocate Co-ordinator Dastgir Legal Aid Centre, Khalid Nabil Lone Chairman District Bait-ul-Maal Committee Sialkot, Muhammad Sharif Ghumman Deputy District Social Welfare Officer and Kalida Tabassum also spoke on the occasion.