Gender Violence against Women- Press Release
A Panel Discussion on Gender Violence against Women ”
An informative and sensitizing panel discussion was organized at Institute of Administrative Sciences (IAS) in collaboration with Global Youth Clan on November 25th 2016. The agenda under discussion was gender based violence against women and was conducted in connection with the international day for the elimination of violence against women i.e. 25th November and Human Rights Day i.e. on 10th December. It is a 16 days of activism campaign to emphasize links between ending gender based violence and human rights.
The event started with the recitation of Holy Quran followed by a welcome note by Mr. Tahir Khattak, student of BS (hons) at IAS and Chairman Global Youth Clan. Panel talk was initiated and moderated by Ms. Khadija Siddiqui – a victim and survivor of violent attack. Panelists included Mr. Bilal Ahmad – director operations FAIDA Foundation, Mr. Raheel Sharoon – Head peace building department at Diocese of Raiwind, Church of Pakistan, Ms. Laraib Abid – a social activist, Ms. Fajar Ajmal – a social activist and declared as one of the top thirteen geniuses of Pakistan. Ms. Laraib Abid briefed in her talk about gender and how it is wrongly perceived by society as a biological aspect. She explained that concept of gender roles is only a cultural difference in any society and is shaped by the environment we live in and in that case we need to look into the institutions of any society that shapes the mindsets of people. These include the family, education, religion, health, media and economy. Ms. Abid talked on the root causes of different mindsets we develop as influenced by the aforementioned institutions and how they reflect in our actions. She also highlighted the concept of gender equality versus gender equity. The discussion was lead further by Mr. Raheel Sharoon as he talked on the types of violence and created awareness about its prevention and discouraging it in society by playing role in individual capacity. Mr. Bilal Ahmad concentrated on the fact that women are ‘nation builders’ and can play a great role in eliminating the gender violence against women in any society by supporting the victimized women and in the longer run, upbringing their children on the concepts of equity. The audience took great interest in the discussion and shared their views about this challenge of various types of violence existing in our society. Ms. Fajar Ajmal addressed the audience particularly on raising their voice for the issues and challenges they face so that they can be resolved and negotiated in an amicable way thus not being victimized by any kind of violence. While discussing about the structural violence in our society, the discussion took a turn towards generation gap and how it can be lessened through the individual efforts and capacities of the younger generation. Panel moderator, Ms. Khadija shared her personal story of being a survivor of the violent attack on her and shared with the audience how she fought back for her right and proved to the society that there is and should be zero tolerance for any violence against any gender.
After closing of the panel discussion, a brief talk was delivered by Ms. Taimur Ashi, a transgender working at stitching & craft department of Fountain House – A renowned Mental Health Institute. Ms. Ashi shared her personal story of extreme hardships she faced right from her early childhood, starting from her own home and family and from the society. It was, however, quite inspiring to learn that she had broken all stereotypes attached with the professions being adopted by majority of the transgender living in our society and is therefore working in a respectable institution and continuing a good profession. The talk was focused on creating awareness about the acceptance of transgender in all walks of life and giving them their due respect.
The discussion was encapsulated by Prof. Dr. Nasira Jabeen, Dean Faculty of Economics and Management Sciences and Director Institute of Administrative Sciences. Dr. Jabeen congratulated the organizing body on bringing forth this highly informative and sensitive topic at the forum for conversation. She emphasized on the rights of the vulnerable groups of society and how this issue can be dealt with by increasing awareness and respecting all genders. Also, Dr. Jabeen mentioned the young audience to be well aware of the physical, verbal and psychological violence and summed up her speech with the thought provoking verse of Allama Muhammad Iqbal:
“Nahin Hay Cheez Nikimi Koi Zamanay Mein
Koi Bura Nhin Qudret kay Karkhanay Mein”
Prof. Dr. Nasira Jabeen, Dr. Shahid Zia – adjunct faculty member and Chairman Corporate Communications at Fountain House, Mr. Muhammad Zahid – senior faculty member and Mr. Tahir Khttak – Chairman for Global Youth Clan presented souvenirs to all the panelists, guest speaker, organizers and supporters of the event. This discussion forum about gender discrimination, women empowerment, and acceptance of vulnerable and marginalized groups lead to several new points to ponder upon and the institute plans to initiate a series of projects, conversations and awareness campaigns to keep the spirit alive, thus making a positive contribution to the society.