PA wants end to women's trafficking -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

PA wants end to women’s trafficking

By Imtiaz Ali

Karachi: The Pakistan People’s Party’s parliamentary leader in Sindh Assembly, Pir Mazhar-ul-Haq, told the House proceedings on Thursday that a woman had been recently killed in Dadu district by her brother-in-law over discovering a missed call on her cell phone.

The PPP leader was speaking on a resolution moved by Kalsoom Chandio urging the government to end all sorts of violence against women.

The assembly later passed the resolution unanimously. The House also passed a similar resolution asking the government to take strict action to end women trafficking.

The mover of the first resolution, Ms Chandio, said that selling women in marriage and getting young girls married to some very old men had also been a sort of violence.

Humera Alwani said around 87 percent women suffered different kinds of violence at home.

She said she had submitted a bill in the assembly on the 8th of August 2008, calling for three years of imprisonment for anyone who dared to slap a woman, but, regrettably, it was not taken up for legislation.

The Katchi Abadis Minister, Rafiq Engineer, suggested to the government to introduce a course in the syllabus to sensitize people on the scourge of violence against women.

Tourism minister, Shazia Marri, said the government had been taking practical steps to empowering women.

Law Minister, Ayaz Soomro, held successive authoritarian regimes and lack of education responsible for the increasing incidents of violence against women.

The Deputy Speaker, Shehla Raza, who chaired the session, said there had been a need for reforming the police.

Marvi Rashdi, Aisha Khoso, Rasheeda Panhwar, Zahid Bhurgari, Jam Madad, Amir Nawab, Tauqeer Bhutto, Rai Naz Bozdar and Shama Mithani also spoke in favour of the resolution.

The resolution urging the government to take strict action to end women trafficking was moved by the Minister for Women Development, and it was supported by several women legislators.

Fatima Bhutto said that some “big and foreign hands” had been involved in women trafficking.

She said she shuddered to disclose the names of the influential people who “trapped” teenage girls and sold them.

Bhutto said the girls were also being used for smuggling narcotics and in incidents of terrorism. She recalled the sort of pressures they faced when they had unearthed a gang involved in women trafficking in Sindh recently.

Anwar Mahar said girls were being “sold” for marriage in certain rural areas. He urged the government to bring legislation against it.

Humera Alwani said the girls were being trapped on the pretext of jobs and marriages.

Farheen Mughal said such victim girls were sometimes sent to Dubai and forced to become “club dancers” there.

She said mostly Bengali women were being sold but this practice also persisted in certain areas of Punjab and Sindh.

Marvi Rashdi said it had been important to pass such resolutions and even more important thing was to see them implemented.

Shama Mithani demanded of the government to expose the influential people involved in the trafficking of women.

The Joint Opposition leader, Jam Madad, said “ours is an Islamic society” where strict action should be taken against such rogue elements.

Dr Sikander Mandhro regretted that women were being sold like goods and services, which was an insult to humanity.

Tourism minister, Shazia Marri said Pakistan was internationally committed to ending trafficking. She called for eliminating poverty which would help in improving the social structure.

Law Minister, Ayaz Soomro, said culprits had sometimes been arrested, but their victims opted for a “compromise” deal and denied the government the basis for acting against them.

Arif Jatoi, Kalsoom Chandio, Rasheeda Panhwar, the Local Government Minister, Agha Siraj Durrani, and the Labour Minister, Amir Nawab, also spoke in favour of the resolution.

Resolution seeks registration, audit of NGOs: The Provincial Assembly of Sindh on Thursday passed a resolution unanimously, urging the government to initiate the process of registration and audit of the non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Ghulam Mujadid Isran, who had moved the resolution, said there had been many unregistered NGOs while the ones registered were not working according to the law.

He said they saw banners of several NGOs during the recent floods in Sindh, but their actual existence was not to be found anywhere.

Isran said the NGOs were working as if they were a “parallel government”.

He said their audit was nominal, mostly done by their own staff.

Isran recommended to the government to start auditing the NGOs.

When he said that mostly the wives of retired soldiers and bureaucrats ran the NGOs, the Acting Speaker, Shehla Raza, took exception to his remarks and added that men also ran the NGOs.

Law minister, Ayaz Soomro, said the NGOs were getting foreign funding whose audit was not being done.

He said if the NGOs had any reservations over the proposed audit being done by the government, the same could be done by independent organizations.
Source: The News
Date:11/5/2010