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Men denying women inheritance right be barred from elections, says Sirajul Haq

By Zubair Ashraf
March 08, 2020

KARACHI: A day before the Aurat March, the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) organized a women conference in Bagh-e-Jinnah on Saturday in which they presented a charter, demanding that the men who deny women their right to inheritance should not be allowed to take part in election.

The conference was part of JI’s “Respect [of] Women Campaign” , which is also holding marches in different cities of the country on the occasion of the International Women’s Day (today) as different segments of the society will also rally on the streets. Speaking at the conference, the JI Amir Senator Siraj ul Haq criticized the organizers of the Aurat March, which started in the country in 2018, saying that “a group of westernized women want to hold our society hostage but they will never succeed.”

Expressing his party’s ideological values, Haq said if the sky was beautiful because of the sun, moon and stars then this land was beautiful because of its “honorable” women. He added that the women were a source of pride and respect and because of them this country will become an Islamic state.

Referring to the deal singed between the United States and the Taliban, Senator Siraj asked if 5,000 Taliban prisoners in Afghanistan can be released then why Dr Aafia Siddiqui, the Pakistani neuroscientist who is jailed in US for 86 years on the charges of attacking US soldiers in Afghanistan, could not be released. “Today, we commemorate Dr Aafia, the women of Kashmir, Palestine and Afghanistan and the [Punjab Medical College, Faisalabad] student who bagged 25 gold medals while observing hijab,” he said, adding that their women will counter the ‘Western agenda’ being imposed on their society. “We demand enforcement of rights for women as given by Allah including their right to inheritance. The man who denies his sister, daughter or wife, her rightful share in inheritance, should not be allowed to take part in elections. The transport system should be women friendly. Women should be given educational and health facilities,” he added.

Haq said that Islam was not against women’s participation in sports, however, they should be provided this opportunity within enclosed walls. He said that a section on Qisas should be added in the Zainab Alert, Response and Recovery Act, 2020 and death penalty be given to those who kidnap, hold hostage and rape a child. In a reference to a slogan raised in Aurat March 2019 “Mera Jism, Meri Marzi (My body, my choice),” he said that “Unfortunately, the women in west have nothing but their bodies. The west has exploited women and that is why women there are lonely. But here in our society, our women have their fathers, brothers and sons to take care of them.”

The secretary general of JI’s women wing, Durdana Siddiqui, said that the basic issue confronted by women in this society was the denial of their rights and justice. “Injustice spoils the whole society,” she said and advocated that acting in accordance with the Islamic jurisprudence could solve all the problems.

The deputy secretary of JI’s women wing, Dr Humaira Tariq, said that Islam deemed men and women as equals but the inequality in society made them inferior to men. She said that the society had gone astray due to deviation from the Islamic teachings has rendered women unsafe. The “Women Rights Charter” presented during the conference said that Islam believed in equality of men and women and had set their rights and responsibilities. It demanded implementation of the laws related to women rights to inheritance, guardianship and Mehr.