WOMEN and minorities are a marginalised and neglected section of our society. The issue of “sexual harassment” is a complex one as, ideally, every male citizen of Pakistan should conduct himself with chivalry and courtesy in his daily dealing with women.
In reality, however, this seldom happens. Nonetheless, women in our land — on all three levels; as human beings, Muslims and Pakistanis — deserve moral respect, tolerance, broad-mindedness and understanding from their male counterparts.
There should be zero tolerance on the matter, and we should never condone women-specific criminal offences such as rape, acid attacks, honour killings, abduction with the intention of forced marriage, and incestuous behaviour. These outrageous incidents should be quashed either with capital punishment or as per the Qisas/Hudood Laws of the land.
The thought of a new Pakistan is one which is deeply nurtured and nourished in the hearts of all of us. It would be a land in which men and women should work side-by-side in every facet of life without fear or hindrance.
To some extent this is already happening. Women and girls are entering the ranks of the “educated” and the “employed” in large numbers. But there is still much to be done. So let the nation resolve that our women get the best of education, health and economic opportunities as envisaged by our religion and our constitution.
Abbas R. Siddiqi