“We will eliminate the curse of dowry [demands] through proper legislation and increase women’s job quota to 15 per cent,” Provincial Minister for Women Development Hamida Waheeduddin said on Thursday.
She was addressing a seminar on women empowerment package at the Girls College, Marghzar Gujrat.
Waheeduddin said that the government was striving to provide employment and promotion opportunities to women. She said women would be given a special age relaxation up to three years. She urged girls to apply for jobs soon after they completed their education.
She said that the government planned to build hostels at each district for working women.
Construction of a hostel at Gujrat would start next year, she announced.
She said that day care centres would be provided for working women’s children.
She said an ombudswoman office had been set up to deal with harassment complaints. She said women constituted 52 per cent of Pakistan’s population and that economic development in the country could not be achieved without their participation.
She said the present government had formed a Women Development Department in 2012 to promote and empower women.
She said the government was putting in its sincere efforts to provide an environment conducive to women’s participation in national development work. She said a committee had been formed to help women get employment and promotion in private departments.
She also attended a seminar at the Government Post Graduate College Mandi Bahauddin as the chief guest. The seminars were attended by large number of teachers and students.
Earlier Women Development Department Punjab Director Moeen Akhtar said that 18 working women hostels had already been built in various districts. He said 200 buses had also been purchased to carry female students. He said work was in progress to build more hostels for girls.
Talking about acid attacks on women, he said legislation was being drafted to try such cases in special courts. He said every working woman could get 90-days maternity leave. He said the requirement of a medical fitness certificate for resumption of duty had been removed.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 6th, 2013.
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