Monday July 22, 2024

‘No place for domestic violence in Islam’

By Myra Imran
March 08, 2023

Islamabad: Chief Justice, Federal Shariat Court, Justice Dr. Syed Muhammad Anwer has said that there is no place for domestic violence in Islam.

He was speaking at the launch of a ‘policy brief on Domestic Violence’ by the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR), in collaboration with UN Women, on Tuesday.

He said that in a diverse society like Pakistan, many issues are overlapping and culture is confused with religion. “Same is with the issue of domestic violence. People were convinced that domestic violence has something to do with Islam, On the contrary, it is nothing to do with Islam. He said that eliminating the menace of domestic violence is a continuous and steady process. He quoted Quran and gave examples from the life of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) when he forbade all kinds of domestic violence.

Launched as part of a wider campaign against domestic violence, the policy brief provides a detailed view of how domestic violence affects Pakistani citizens, particularly women. Furthermore, it analyses possible interventions that can be made against domestic violence, citing the establishment of federal domestic violence legislation as a crucial step in addressing this ‘urgent matter.’ The brief also examines the international commitments made by Pakistan and provides recommendations for legal and socio-economic actions that can be taken by the government to tackle the issue.

Speaking on this occasion, NCHR Chairperson Rabiya Javeri Agha said that following nationwide consultation and meetings with various stakeholders from civil society and state institutions, the NCHR took note of the alarming rise in domestic violence cases in the country and lack of protection for women who find themselves in an increasingly precarious position as Pakistan reels from COVID-19 pandemic, the devastating floods and now rising inflation, all which disproportionally affect women far more than their male counterparts.

The Chairperson said besides working on a Policy Brief, the Commission has launched a helpline (1413) for the protection of women's marriage rights in Punjab. “In addition to that, the NCHR has a complaint redressal mechanism and continuously follows up on rules and implementation of provincial domestic violence Acts in Sindh and Balochistan.”

The information gathered by the Policy Brief research team shows that over 90 per cent of Pakistani women face domestic violence in their lifetime (HRCP Factsheet on Domestic Violence During COVID-19 Lockdown) and there were 10,000 to 11,000 reported cases of violence against women (Aurat Foundation, SSDO, and NADRA).