Mother or father? - Pakistan Today

Mother or father?

More than 57, 287 guardian cases are pending at Lahore’s Guardian courts with more than 90,000 children awaiting a decision on their future, Pakistan Today has learnt. The snails pace at which the court decides is shown by the fact that a number of cases have not been decided despite a lapse of nine to ten years during which the children in question have aged without a resolution. The entire caseload falls to only seven family and three guardian courts.
Short meeting time: A second complaint has been the short meeting time granted to non-custodial parents, who are only granted two hours per month to meet their children within the court’s premises. The short meeting time brings out strong emotions within the non-custodial parent, who, however, attempts to hide their feelings before the custodial parent.
Experts said senior judges should be appointed in family courts since their experience helps them handle family cases better. Experts claimed the flaws of the current family and guardian courts had made the lives of children miserable who suffer immense psychological stress. Parents must think of their children when deciding to divorce, they seemed to suggest.
Think about children: Talking to Pakistan Today, family law expert Advocate Zafer Iqbal Kalanori postulated that the institution of the family had weakened due to the inability to tolerate each other of husbands and wives. He said the Family Act (Ammendment) 2001 had made it easier to obtain decision, but couples were not considering the fate of their children when taking the decision. Kalanori advocated for the appointment of competent, high-ranking judges in guardian courts and stressed the need for quick verdicts, since the life of children was at stake. He said, “family cases have a tendency to remain stuck in courts for several years but parents have a right to register their plea in the High Court if family courts fail to declare a final verdict within six months.”
Separation is painful: Psychiatrist Hassan Raza said that the separation of one’s parents was a painful experience for all children regardless of age. Raza said most children cannot come to grips with the idea of their parents getting separated and find it difficult adjusting with an affect on emotional, physical and mental health.
Another psychiatrist Zaheera Bano told Pakistan Today, that compared to small children, adolescents feel a separation more and develop fear for their own future, caught between affection for both parents. Bano said some adolescents start looking after household chores and bring up their younger siblings but others find it difficult adjusting with either their stepmother or stepfather. “Sometimes divorce also affects the relationship of children with their own parents,” Bano said, “boys and girls react differently to their parents’ divorce.” She said, after divorce, girls become more emotional and frustrated whereas boys become more aggressive and disobedient. “Separation affects a child, that’s for sure,” she added.
Tales from the court: At the guardian court Pakistan Today met Tehmina. After having three children, she divorced her husband in 2004. Subsequently, she filed for child custody maintenance but seven years on her case remains pending in the guardian court. She comes to every court hearing and only meets her children in the court premises for two hours once a month.
“It is painful being unable to give my children a mother’s love for seven years,” said Tehmina, “I miss my children both when I am happy or sad.”
Another pending case was of Shahzad Ahmed who filed a child custody maintenance case for his brother’s Saeed Ahmed children after Saeed died. Shahzad said, “After my brother’s death his wife forbade the children from meeting their father’s relatives.”
“We do not want a share in our brother’s property but there should not be restrictions on children to meet their father’s relatives,” he said.
In 2005, Zaeem Tahir, 10, saw his parents separate. He now lives with his father and studies in grade five. Speaking to Pakistan Today, Zaeem said, “I do not know how to respond on parent’s day when my class fellows ask about my mother. I do not wish to re-tell the tragic story of my parents since I have not dealt with it myself.” He added that his grandfather did not allow him to meet his mother and was annoyed when he mentioned his mother.
Engineering student Iftikhar, whose parents separated when he was three, said, “15 years on, I still cannot understand why my parent’s marriage ended up in smoke?” Iftikhar said parents should make these difficult choices carefully since the child of divorced parents faces discrimination throughout his life.
In the final year of her Masters in Political Science, Rabia said “When I was in Grade 3 my parents separated and I lived alone with my mother. But even now I wish my parents were together.”
While the children of divorced parents complain of their loss, Guardian courts remain unable to rule in the custody cases of over 90,000 children, aggravating psychological stress for children already undergoing emotional stress.



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8 Comments

  1. Imran said:

    Hi, I'm imran age 35 from Lahore. I divorced my wife . I have one baby boy 6 years and baby girl 4 years. kids living with their mther. read all article deeply. its all correct. but…… sometimes insan itna majboor ho jata hai k sab batyn maloom honay k bawjood divorce deni parti hai. myn ne har mumkin koshish ki k divorce na deni paray, court k zareay mamla solve karnay ki bi try ki, 2 talqyn akhatti nahi dyn balkay ek ek kar k deen ta k kisi tarah mamla hal ho jay aur family kharab na ho. hamesha aurat mazloom nahi hoti. bebak aur janbaz aurtyn ham jesay mardon ko itna majboooor kar deti hyn hyn k hamyn apni sharafat aur izzat ko bachanay k leay divorce deni parti hai. mera susral walay mujay apnay bachon se milnay nahi detay. muj se badmashi kartay hyn, dhamkyan detay hyn. you all plz pray for me and for my kids. Allah Hafiz

    • Khan said:

      That is true, I am facing same and looking forward to get my kids, pray for me Imran, thanks

      • Sagheer Ahmed said:

        mard bechara mazloom hai aor qanoon zalam hai. ensani history ma entna bura zulam ki misal nai milti jitna pakistan ma bechara mardoo ka sath ye courts aor women kr rahi hain aor hum bilkal babus hain

  2. Mobeen said:

    My wife demanding for property ownership to sustain marriage otherwise she will go for divorce. I have two innocent kids. i had not inform on their births. I was not given rights to say Azan in their ears. This is how i am being black mailed by in laws. I request to the family court please give some rights to men as well they can stop women for asking divorce. Divorce ratio is being increasing rapidly. The don't have fear that it could be dangerous for them as well as children. I wish i could see my childrens. I am missing them a lot. Since last eight month i did not see them

    • Shazia said:

      Mobeen. Take matters in your own hands. Don't count on courts.

  3. do my assignment said:

    For the broken families it is the worst thing for the families with the custody of the kids by the court. With the essay writing parents can give better to their kids. And the decision pending of the custody of kids will spoil the kids in many of their fields.

  4. Ahmed said:

    jis oorat na ap ka apna bacho ka kan ma apko azan nai dena di usko bhool jao aor nai zindgi start kero and sabar kero. Allah usko waisa hi gharak ker da ga. ye bht bara zulm ha. Allah apko kamyab kera. Ameen

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