ISLAMABAD - The landmark ‘Domestic Violence (Prevention and Protection) Act 2012’ passes unanimously by the Senate is a great leap forward for the cause of women and children-the two most vulnerable sections of the society.
Women Empowerment Goodwill Ambassador Syeda Fiza Batool Gilani expressed these views when the bill, which had already been passed by the National Assembly in August 2009, was also passed by the Senate.
Given the fact that the issue of domestic violence has long remained a source of public concern, the ambassador termed the passage of the bill as the need of the hour in order to provide relief to the victims of domestic violence by highlighting the subject and drawing attention to it.
The Domestic Violence Bill makes violence against women and children an offence, punishable by time in jail and imposition of fines.
The bill also been stipulates that the cases regarding domestic violence be dealt with expeditiously. Time lines in this connection have also been given.
Gilani emphasised that it has always been the policy of the Pakistan Peoples Party to promote the cause of women in all spheres of national activity. She said the present democratic government’s policy decisions and pro-women legislation passed by the parliament were testament to the party’s resolve.
Coming on the heels of ‘Protection Against Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2010’, ‘Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Bill, 2008’ and ‘Acid Control and Acid Crime Prevention Act, 2011’, this bill, once incorporated into the law after presidential assent, will herald a significant change in the condition of women and children across the country.
Gilani said the democratically-elected government had fulfilled its promises for the emancipation and empowerment of Pakistani women through the passage of this bill.
She also hailed the passage of the bill as the fruit of years of effort of the Parliamentary Women Caucus and civil society organisations. She said: “The way these organisations have ensured the passage of several pro-women legislation in the parliament demonstrates their commitment to the cause of ending social and economic injustices women suffer at the hands of men in society.”