Women empowerment is state empowerment


Akhtar Umrani
Historically, women have played a great role in every walk of life.Unfolding the pages of Pakistani history, the women Wing of All India Muslim League under the supervision of Fatima Jinnah struggled shoulder to shoulder with their men against the British rule until the separation of Pakistan .Similarly, Leila khaled is an example of women bravery. She brave woman who is a leading figure of Palestinian Resistance Movement.So, this concept is failed and illogical that women are less than men.Rightly said,”Women and men are like two wheels of a vehicle if one of them stops, the entire process will get stopped”.Unfortunately, last year, the “Aurat March” was politicalized by some of the so called leaders or public representatives for their political gains.The Women’s March was shown as if it meant to promote Western culture in Pakistan ; it didn’t have any intention to harm prestigious religious and cultural values and promote Western culture here.It is only to raise voice for the women suffering from sexual harassment, rape,domestic violence,acid attacks and gender based discrimination. Accordinging a report, 2699 girls were raped in 2014, 2509 in 2015, 2938 in 2016 and the numbers increased 14% in 2018-19.These were the reported ones, whereas, there are hundreds and thousands of cases which were not reported.Pakistan is ranked 4th most dangerous country for women.Another report stated that, over 90 percent women are facing domestic violence and sexual harassment in Pakistan.Last year, there were cases of harassment in the University of Balochistan (UoB) where cameras were fixed in the bathrooms, and then the female students were blackmailed and harassed, but none spoke for them and with the passage of time their voices were oppressed.Morever, the rarely reported cases of ‘Wani’ (retributions)are also an issue in the rural areas of Sindh and Punjab.According to a report, a Jirga (a type of quasi Kangaroo court ) attempted ruling to give up a 13 year minor girl in marriage to a 41 year married man as Swara (punishment) for her brother’s alleged disliked relation with his cousin.Like this, there are a number of cases which are not highlighted.Apart from this, the numbers of women are very much less when one sees the state departments, such as Police Service of Pakistan(PSP), Foreign Service of Pakistan and etc.Women are 41 percent of Pakistan’s population means half of the population is not participating in state’s affairs. It is well said,”Men and women are like two hands when two of the hands perform a task together, then, no doubt, that will be greatly successful”.So, the celebration of women’s day on 8th March is meant to create a place for women in our men dominated society.They should be treated equally and be given equal opportunities for prosperity.Neither the Constitution of 1973 of Pakistan ,nor Islam denies that women and men are equal and should be treated equally.Unfortunately, we misunderstood the meaning of Aurat March and women impoverishment.The March was firstly opposed and criticised on media.platforms, and later they were attacked in Islamabad last year with stones and sticks.It is the prove of our extremist mindsets.Today the countries like USA, UK, France, Germany and so on are touching the acme of development and prosperity just because they have respected and treated the women equally. Lastly, until and unless we accept this fact that women and men are equal and give them the rights mentioned in our Constitution and Quran,we can progress .And,to overcome from all these issues faced by the women, we need to struggle.for women empowerment in  Pakistan.