On March 8th, this year, Pakistan joined the rest of the world to celebrate Women’s Day along with a diverse international community. Many rallies, meetings and functions were organized by different NGOs working for the cause of uplifting and empowering the women in Pakistan. The message given was intended to be constructive and positive but it seemed as if it wasn’t received accordingly. There are genuine reasons for this and they are in their own right justified.
It has been observed by many leading feminists that, the real practical work being done for the oppressed women is like grain in the salt, nowhere to be seen! Mostly the funds given by international community to NGOs are being squandered on rallies. These rallies are most of the time attended by those women who are doing fine and enjoy equal freedom as their male counterparts. The women who actually need help and guidance are waiting with no hope in sight.
There is a lot to be done in this regard and without formulating any impressive and workable strategy we shall be celebrating this day every year with pomp. Young girls who are working as maids in houses to support their families should be encouraged to go to schools, a monthly reasonable stipend should be offered to their families. These NGOs should lobby the policy-making agencies to introduce pragmatic regulations related to violence against women and if possible the cases should be tried and settled in ATC courts.
Rural women should be sensitized about their rights. A series of pamphlets or booklets should be published in multiple languages to benefit as many people as possible. These are the basic steps which if implemented would prove a first step forward towards prosperity of women. Symbolism is a good thing if followed by action.