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Women, minorities Four draft bills submitted

ISLAMABAD: National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW) has submitted to the Ministry of Human Rights four draft bills concerning women issues and personal laws of the minorities living in Pakistan.

The drafts bills are: Hindu Marriages Act 2011, Christian Marriages Amendment Act 2011, Christian Divorce Amendment Act 2011, and Domestic Violence (Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2011), the commission announced here on Friday.

The draft bills for the Hindu and Christian communities were prepared by Law Committee of NCSW following a focused group discussion on marriage and divorce of the personal laws of both minorities. To combat domestic violence, another draft of bill to introduce effective penal clauses in the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) has also been prepared after having consultations with the civil society and other stakeholders.

The commission has requested the ministry of human rights to introduce the draft in the parliament as a government bill.

Separately, it has written a letter to President Asif Zardari, urging him to extend the scope of women-friendly legislation to Fata, while invoking his sole power under Article 247 of the Constitution. The landmark legislation done by the present government on “Prevention of Anti-Women Practices (Criminal Law Amendment) Act 2011”, “Acid Control and the Acid Crimes Prevention (Criminal Law Amendment) Act 2011” and “Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Act 2010” should be extended to the Fata region; the commission has urged the president.

Source: Dawn