South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

By Marium Kiani

ISLAMABAD: Cases of violence against women witnessed a 13 per cent increase in 2009 in one year, statistics collected by team of Aurat Foundation show.

Addressing a Press conference here on Monday, the foundation’s representative Rabeea Hadi said that 8,548 incidents of violence against women were reported in the four provinces and in Islamabad last year. Of them, 5,722 incidents were recorded in Punjab, 1762 in Sindh, 655 in NWFP, 237 in Balochistan and 172 in Islamabad. She said that 7571 incidents of violence had been reported in 2008.

In Islamabad, the 172 incidents included 39 cases of murder, two of ‘honour’ killing, 52 of abduction/kidnapping and 18 of domestic violence.The figures are part of a report yet to be published.

“The state, honourable judiciary, free media, the women’s rights and human rights organisations and common citizens must know that 1384 daughters of Pakistan were murdered, 928 were raped, 683 committed suicide and 604 were killed in the name of ‘honour’ in year 2009,” said Ms Hadi.

“With extreme pain and anguish, we express our outrage and resentment over this state of affairs where women and girls are being murdered, kidnapped and subjected to various forms of violence, including killings in the name of ‘honour’, suicides, acid throwing and stove-burning with shameless impunity and the state functionaries are doing nothing except lip-service before TV cameras and that too only in some high-profile cases,” she said.

Having no expectations from the interior ministry or provincial governments, she said she would urge the Ministry of Women’s Development and Women’s Parliamentary Caucus headed by the Speaker of National Assembly and the National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW) headed by a renowned women’s rights activist to do something about this horrible situation.

The number and percentage of the cases of abduction and kidnapping in 2009 are — 1987 (23.25pc), murder 1384 (16.9pc), rape/gang-rape 928 (10.86pc), suicide 683 (7.99pc) and ‘honour’ killing 604 (7.07pc) followed by cases of sexual assault 274 (3.21pc), stove burning 50 (0.58pc), acid throwing 27 (0.60pc) and offences of miscellaneous nature around (23.13pc). Around 1,977 cases of violence were of miscellaneous nature such as vanni/swara, custodial violence, torture, trafficking, child marriages, incest, threat to violence, sexual harassment, attempted murder, suicide and rape.

The highest increase in the number of reported cases i.e. from 281 in 2008 to 608 in 2009 was in domestic violence. However, the reported murder incidents decreased from 1,422 in 2008 to 1,384 in 2009.

Of the 5,722 incidents of violence in 35 districts of Pubjab, there were 1698 cases of abduction/kidnapping, 752 cases of murder, 245 of ‘honour’ killing, 786 of rape/gang rape, 448 of suicide, 227 of sexual assault, 33 of stove burning, 42 of acid throwing, and 1220 cases of miscellaneous nature.

Of the 1,762 incidents reported from 23 districts of Sindh, 288 were of murder (one of the highest ratio of crime against women reported from the province), 284 of ‘honour’ killing, 160 of abduction/kidnapping, 176 of suicide, 122 of rape/gang rape, 122 of domestic violence, 44 of sexual assault, 10 of stove burning, 9 of acid throwing and 535 of miscellaneous nature.

Similarly, of the 237 incidents of violence in 28 districts of Balochastan, 59 were of ‘honour’ killing, 39 of murder, 13 of abduction/kidnapping, 4 of rape/gang-rape, 10 of suicide, one of stove burning and 22 of miscellaneous nature.

Source: Dawn – 02.02.2010

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