KARACHI: The Home-Based Women Workers Federation (HBWWF) organised a gathering on the occasion of International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Friday.
HBWWF general secretary Zehra Akbar Khan said that women could be accepted as complete human beings only after all norms of patriarchy — social, political and economic — were ended.
She said that the day was designated as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in 1999 by the UN General Assembly.
Zehra said that women in the world are fighting for their rights and against all sorts of discrimination.
She claimed that violence against women has become a part of daily life. She regretted that in this modern era, women’s access to healthcare facilities is negligible.
“Every day more than 800 women die from childbirth-related complications, 95 per cent of them in developing countries. Presently 836 million people of the world live beneath the poverty line and are deprived of their basic rights.
Today there is a big difference in wages of male and female workers. Every year 700 million girls are married before attaining 18 years of age and of them 250 million girls are married off before they reach the age of 15 years,” she said.
She said it was high time that women challenge the structure of this oppression-based society and its mindset, which did not consider them human beings. She said real change is possible only when women become organized and adopt principles of communism and take part in democratic movements.
It was also announced that thousands of working women would take part in a rally scheduled for Nov 29 against price hike, violence against women and “slavery” of the International Monetary Fund.
The speakers called for ending all discriminatory laws against women.
They also called for stopping harassment of women at workplaces and setting up anti-harassment committees at all workplaces.
They demanded to end gender-based disparity in wages.
They also asked the government to ratify the ILO Convention 190 and make laws in its light and purge anti-women content from publication and broadcasting of media organizations, and textbooks.