Women have to empower themselves and there is no other option for them but to stand against subjugation, societal taboos, customary practices and all sorts of discrimination.
They need to dream big and to play their role in building a progressive and prosperous society. These were the views of the speakers at a special seminar on “Recognizing Struggle of Women Leadership”, organized by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) here on Thursday to mark International Women’s Day. Mushaal Hussein Mullick, wife of Hurriyat Leader Yasin Malik and Chairperson Peace and Culture Organization on the occasion said that almost every home and woman in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) was subjected to either physical or sexual violence.
“Now women have taken the leadership role in Kashmir, where the men (husbands, sons, fathers or brothers) were mostly held as prisoners or paralyzed by the Indian Army’s brutal torture,” she said.
Despite continued oppression and curfew, Kashmiri women were continuing their peaceful freedom struggle and even the pellet bullets could not kill their voices, she added. “Courageous Kashmiri women such as Asiya Andrabi, Parveena Ahanger and other great women are truly the champions of peaceful freedom struggle in IOK”, said Mushaal, adding that women participation in peace initiatives was imperative, as any peace initiatives would be meaningless without Kashmiri women’s participation.
Senator Sherry Rehman from Pakistan People’s Party said women have been on the forefront of democratic struggle in Pakistan’s political history. “We have seen the struggle of Fatima Jinnah, Benazir Bhuttoo and Asma Jahangir, who were the icon of resistance, peace and have been the champions of democracy,” she added.
“Though our destination is far away but we shouldn’t stop here and keep fighting and continue struggle for justice and rights.
” “We are proud to take Pakistan’s first Hindu-Dalit girl ‘Krishna Kumari’ from a bonded laborer to a Senator in the upper house of the parliament, which shows the sign of a progressive change in our society,” said Sherry Rehman, adding that one woman standing-up against the prejudice could brought significant change in the society.
Renowned poet, Kishwar Naheed said in old times women used to run into rooms, not for fear, but for hiding themselves to ensure veil (Parda). She said now the time as well as the world has changed and hijab (veil) has become fashion.
The writer heads a leading news wire service ‘The Law Today Pakistan’ commonly known as TLTP. He has a special focus on news relating to superior courts adjudication, access to right of information, civil, political, social and economic rights under the approach that existing cyber regime realization ensures procedural fairness in administrative law. He can be reached at email@example.com