Only love of death can curb honour-killing, PA told
By Habib Khan Ghori
KARACHI: In what appears to be an attempt to trivialise the issue of karo-kari, Sindh Home Minister Dr Zulfikar Mirza told the Sindh Assembly on Friday that only love of one’s death could bring an end to the menace of honour-killing.
Conceding the government’s failure, Dr Mirza said that the provincial government and the Pakistan People’s Party alone could not eliminate the killings in the name of honour, as for this all the people in the province should play their role.
He was responding to speeches made on the floor of the house by half a dozen lawmakers, mostly women MPAs, on a resolution moved by MPA Farheen Moghal against the menace of karo-kari.
Claiming that the issue was directly related to his department, the home minister, in his emotional speech, criticised the jirga system where, he said, ‘waderas’ and feudals were deciding the fate of the people.
He said that men alone could not be held responsible for honour-killings, as women [are equally responsible] since the person who committed a murder in the name of honour was the son of some woman.
The home minister, who has no dearth of police guards, requested men and women to pledge to start loving their death which, he said, would eliminate their lust for luxury and wealth and enable them to raise their voice against injustice and oppression against weak and helpless segments of society, women in particular.
He said that the PPP government had always exercised all power to provide justice to the oppressed and helpless sections of society.
Winding up the discussion, Law Minister Ayaz Soomro said the previous government neither presented any resolution about domestic violence nor allowed the opposition to move its resolutions in this regard.
He clarified that during the past 27 months, all FIRs regarding incidents of honour killing were being lodged under Section 302 (premeditated murder) of the Pakistan Penal Code.
The resolution demanding the government to take steps to treat a murder in the name of honour (karo-kari) as culpable homicide and culprits be charged and prosecuted under Section 302 of the PPC was put to a vote in the house and passed unanimously.
Besides mover of the resolution Farheen Moghal, MPAs Rashida Panwhar, Shama Mithani, Humera Alwani, Shazia Marri, Tauqir Fatima, Shehla Raza, Jam Tamachi also spoke.
Earlier, Deputy Speaker Shehla Raza entered the assembly hall at 9.30am to start the proceedings on time. As she took the seat of the speaker in the vacant hall and asked the secretary of the assembly, Hadi Bux Buriro, to initiate proceedings at 10am, only five MPAs had taken their seats.
The chair took up the questions hour at 10.05am after and by that time over a dozen members had taken their seat in the house.
Speaker Nisar Ahmad Khuhro – who returned only the previous night after attending a conference of the Commonwealth Parliamentarians Associations in India – took up the chair at 10.30am during the questions hour, which was completed at 11.05am.
Minister Manzoor Wasan entered the house and took his seat without signing the attendance register. Upon which, MPA Muhammad Nawaz Chandiro drew the attention of the chair towards this and said that ministers and members were equal in the house and, therefore, the minister was supposed to sign the register with the time of his arrival in the house.
The chair ruled that all members, including ministers, were equal and had to sign the attendance register.
Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Jam Madad Ali drew the attention of the house towards the collection of Rs500 amount on each sacrificial animal and an 11 per cent penalty being charged in the name of the city government at different places of entry of animals being brought from Punjab, Balochsitan and interior of Sindh.
He said upon questioning the men collecting money said that their contractor was some Gilani, who was reportedly a nephew of the chief minister.
The local government minister said that the contracts of district governments were not awarded by the chief minister and any complaint in this regard should be given in writing.
The minister assured him that he would not only suspend the official involved but action would also be taken against the officer as no one could be allowed to misuse the name of any authority.