Violence against women: Where is justice when we need it?
The gang-rape case of Anwar Bibi is another example of how violence against women is completely ignored as an issue.
The issue of violence against women in our country is, unfortunately, one that has existed for far too long. Many women still await justice against the brutalities that have made their lives miserable. Anwari Bibi, a resident of Ghotki and a mother of four children, was one of them.
She was gang raped by her brother-in-law and his companions while pregnant. After her husband took custody of her children and divorced her, she came to Islamabad to knock at the doors of the self-proclaimed representatives of justice. She returned home not too long after, empty handed.
Being a reporter, and more importantly a woman, it was incredibly challenging for me to do her story justice, but I attempted it with the hope that maybe the so-called leaders of our country would take notice.
In order to take one step further, I approached the Advisor to the Prime Minister on Women Development Yasmeen Rehman after being inspired by her tall claims about the government’s initiatives of empowering women and shared with her Bibi’s story.
She asked me to email my article to her so that she can take up the issue in the parliament. However, after few days I called her to get an update and was left flabbergasted when she told me that for the past three or four days she was busy inaugurating cultural events at the Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA).
The issue was also raised by Kamran Shahid, in his program FrontLine on Express News, in which he aired Bibi’s interview and invited Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaulla as well as renowned social activist Dr Fouzia Saeed.
Contrary to their reputed titles, both guests criticised the show’s host for raising such issues in order to seek fame, and blamed the media for discouraging common people from seeking justice by highlighting such stories. But, was anything done for Bibi? No.
After struggling for six months, Bibi failed to get any help or justice from those in the position to actually do something.
However, I recently learned that a man, a banker by profession who lives near Multan, proposed to Bibi after he was made aware of her circumstances. They will be getting married on December 24, 2010.