Govt committed to implement laws protecting women rights: Dr Sumaira Shams

PESHAWAR: Chairperson, Women Parliamentary Caucus of KP Assembly, Dr. Sumaira Shams has said that government was committed to work with all relevant stakeholders to ensure effective implementation of laws.

She was speaking at a consultative session organized by Aawaz-II Programme in partnership with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Commission on the Status of Women (KPCSW), to celebrate the passage of the landmark KP Domestic Violence Against Women (Prevention & Protection) Act 2021.

Civil society activists, lawyers and journalists from across KP participated in the event. Talking about the significant aspects of the law Dr. Sumaira Shams said that the law recognizes psychological and emotional pressures as a form of violence.

The passage of the landmark legislation was hailed as an important milestone. However, immediate attention on framing rules and regulations was suggested.

On the occasion, Ms. Rukhshanda Naz, Ombudsperson-KP on Harassment at Workplace stressed the need for community engagement to ensure that people are aware of the legislation.

The law first proposed in 2012, was passed this year due to efforts of parliamentarians, especially women MPAs, across party lines.

Dr. Riffat Sardar, Chair of the KP Commission on the Status of Women said that this legislation shows the intentions of the government towards curbing harmful social practices that affect women and other vulnerable groups. “Collective efforts of government and civil society are needed to help people benefit from the law, ” she said.

Dr. Yasmin Zaidi, Team Leader of Aawaz-II said that the programme provides platforms and teams at the village, district and provincial levels to help inform people about the law and facilitate its implementation to help survivors of violence.

Ms. Farzana Ali, journalist, Ms. Mehvish Kakakhel, lawyer, Ms, Amna Durrani & Mr. Qamar Naseem also spoke on the occasion.

Aawaz II Programme works with local communities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab to promote the rights of children, women, youth, and other vulnerable groups, to work towards a more inclusive, tolerant and peaceful Pakistan. Aawaz-II is a programme managed by the British Council with support from UK Aid.