‘Violence against women needs to be responded everywhere’

December 03, 2020

Islamabad : Speakers at a webinar ‘Violence against Women in Pakistan, a Shadow Pandemic: Responsibilities of State amid Covid-19 and Beyond’ were of the view that violence against women...

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Islamabad : Speakers at a webinar ‘Violence against Women in Pakistan, a Shadow Pandemic: Responsibilities of State amid Covid-19 and Beyond’ were of the view that violence against women is a global phenomenon that needs to be responded to everywhere. However, lack of implementation of relevant laws is a matter of serious concern in societies like Pakistan and structural reforms, therefore, are need of the hour to deal with this issue.

The seminar was organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute here Wednesday.

Wendy Gilmour, the Canadian High Commissioner to Pakistan said that his country’s policy revolves around strengthening the judicial system and supporting victims of such acts of violence. Moreover, we are working with civil society organisations at the grassroots level to build support systems for the victims of gender-based violence. Destigmatising of reporting rape cases is crucial to ensure victim’s access to justice, she observed.

Khawar Mumtaz, former Chairperson, National Commission on the Status of Women said that although the occurrence of the gender-based violence in our society is quite alarming, such incidents are now being reported and highlighted widely which is a positive development.

She added that the lack of seriousness on the part of state institutions is one major obstacle in the ways of victim’s access to justice. Therefore, it would be important to build the capacity of structures in the justice system, she added.

Senior journalist, Asma Shirazi, opined that online harassment became a new form of violence against women. She said that such violence is being used as a tool to silence the dissenting voices by the regimes in an organised manner.



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