As the struggle to denounce violence against women (VAW) gains momentum, with billions of funds injected into the campaign through civil society organisations, the number of women victimised in Hazara division witnessed a rise in 2011, while the current year promises to be no better.
According to research conducted by Human Development Organisation, an organisation working for human rights, a total of 106 cases were reported from Haripur, Abbottabad, Mansehra, Battagram, Kohistan and Torghar districts.
The research suggests that a majority of firearm killings were motivated by family feuds and murder by close relatives, while only a few were accidental discharges. Fifteen suicides committed under undisclosed circumstances were not investigated by the police.
Tehsinullah Khan of HDO believes that 80 per cent of cases involving the murder of women are changed into reports of suicide by the police.
In 2011, three women were injured in cases involving family enmity, there was one case of attempted murder and a woman lost her nose after she was accused of having illicit relations with a relative.
During the first 38 days of 2012, at least 12 women were killed, two raped, while five cases of abuse were reported from across Hazara.
Human rights activists believe the number of cases is significantly higher, however, due to the fear of bringing dishonour to the family, such incidents are hushed up, according to research data.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 9th, 2012.