Mukhtar Mai to address symposium in US
MUZAFFARGARH, April 27: Mukhtar Mai, an alleged rape victim who turned women rights activist, will attend a symposium at the Johns Hopkins University, USA, on April 30.
The university has arranged the 2007 foreign affairs symposium titled “From Victim to Activist: The Changing Face of Women’s Rights in Pakistan” in which Mukhtar Mai will address the audience about her victimisation and struggle for improving the lot of Pakistani women.
An official of the Mukhtar Mai Organisation in Meerwala told Dawn on Friday that Mukhtar Mai would leave for the US on Saturday (today) from Karachi.
Mukhtar Mai recently got the attention of the US media because an American columnist, Nicholas Kristof, highlighted the issue of security and harassment of Mukhtar Mai allegedly by the government.
“Mukhtar is a hero of mine,” Kristof writes in The New York Times. “But her work has earned her many enemies, particularly among the feudal lords – and even in the government of President Pervez Musharraf who fears that Mukhtar displays Pakistan’s dirty laundry before the world.
“So the Pakistani authorities are harassing Mukhtar, trying to break her organisation which helps women and the poor in distress.