Published in The Pakistan Observer on Oct. 03 by Salim Ahmed ::
A seminar on pro-women laws was organised by civil society organisations in Lahore to discuss the importance of women rights and their effective implementation. The event was organised by World Vision International – Pakistan in collaboration with civil society organisations. The seminar aimed at raising awareness among civil society organisations and EDACE partners at provincial level on existing pro-women laws and to increase the engagement of government and civil society organisations in the implementation of these laws.
Justice Nasira Javed Iqbal was the chief guest of the event. Ms. Fozia Vikar, Chairperson Punjab Commission on Status of Women, Ms. Bushra Khaliq, Chief Executive Director WISE, Mr. Ali Imran and Mr. Ahmer Majeed were among the guest speakers at the event. During the seminar, Chief Guest Justice Nasira Javed Iqbal while addressing to the participants shared her views on domestic violence bill. She said, “Civil society organisations have played an important role in drafting of domestic violence bill. This bill is under discussion in Cabinet.”
Fozia Vikar, Chairperson Punjab Commission on the Status of Women discussed the importance of women rights. She said, “Basically the purpose of this commission is to facilitate and monitor government department for the implementation of pro-women laws. The commission will provide redressal mechanism for the protection of women rights. Commission will conduct a research on the proper functioning of concerned government departments. Commission will also prepare a report on gender empowerment and commitments.” “As a civil society organisation, it is our responsibility to collect facts and figures regarding pro-women laws,” she added.
Bushra Khaliq, Chief Executive Director WISE, discussed the salient features of sexual harassment act 2010. “Code of conducts should be displaced at private and public offices. According to this law, inquiry committee should be involved first in hearing of cases,” Bushra shared. Ahmer Majeed discussed that the Child Marriage Restraint Act 1929 is the law governing issues of child marriage in Pakistan.
Deliberating on mutual collaboration between government and other stakeholders Mr. Aurangzeb Khan, Area Development Manager, Punjab shared, “World Vision Pakistan closely works with government line departments and civil society organisations to collectively address the basic human rights issues faced by the vulnerable children and women residing in urban and rural or tough conditions.”