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Acid attacks on women


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ACID, cheap and easily available, is the quickest weapon to destroy a woman’s life. This comes handy in Cambodia, Afghanistan, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and other nearby countries.

Globally, at least 1,500 people in 20 countries are attacked in this way every year: 80 per cent of whom are women and somewhere between 40 per cent and 70 per cent of them under 18 years of age.

In South Asia people use acid to attack their victims as a form of revenge for refusal to sexual advances, proposals of marriage and demands for dowry.

In November 2008 extremists subjected schoolgirls in Afghanistan to acid attacks for attending school.

In Cambodia, it was reported that these attacks were mostly carried out by wives against their husbands’ lovers.

In 2006 a group in Gaza calling itself ‘Just sword of Islam’ claimed to have thrown acid at young women who were dressed ‘immodestly’ and warned other women to wear hijab.

In India, acid attacks on women who dared to refuse a man’s proposal of marriage or asked for divorce are common form of revenge.

The number of acid attacks has been rising in India and there have been 68 reported acid attacks in the state of Karnatak since 1999.

Tom O’Neil of National Geographic reported that acid throwing is also used to enforce the caste system in modern India, where upper caste individuals often attack Dalits for supposedly violating the order.

According to Rand Corporation commentary, hundreds of women in Pakistan and Afghanistan have been blinded or maimed when acid was thrown on their unveiled faces by male fanatics who considered them improperly dressed.

Attacks or threats of attacks on women who don’t wear hijab or otherwise ‘immodestly dressed’ have been reported in other countries as well.

The government must rise to the occasion and do its utmost to put a stop to this barbaric practice by dealing sternly with those who take recourse to such an inhuman practice, and also make availability of acids next to impossible.


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Comments (5) Closed

Razzaq Jun 20, 2012 06:14pm
TIT FOR TAT this what needed, not hearing and than prison sentence for 6 months or few years. Once evidently proven the crime, the victim must be asked to return in kind.
SamarMalik Jun 20, 2012 12:48pm
This is a serious issue, specially when it comes to females. Firstly, the main cause of such cheap acts is extremism and lack of education. Even if a woman is not dressed properly, or is not covering her face, none of the laws allow any man to throw acid on her face or even beat her or torture her. If the woman in improper dress is your daughter, or wife, or sister then you can ask her to cover her face or to dress in a proper way, otherwise everybody must concern his own business. Unfortunately, our Ill-educated so called Molvies bring religion Islam in this matter, but they do not bother to see that Islam says Amar Bil Maroof Wa Nahi An il Munkir (To order for good deeds and stop from bad deeds) but do not authorize any body to destroy others life. This is the message of Islam that no one has any right/authority over others property, or dignity or life. If you want to guide a woman in any situation you need to opt for a reasonable way, everything is properly described in Quran. You do not need to be brutal with the females. This act has to be condemned and there has to be described punishment for those who take law in their hands in such a wild way. This is not, what you call "Ghairat", This is something beyond brutality.
Maj rtd MA Alam Jun 20, 2012 12:36pm
God Almighty has given us brain to blunt the acid attack on women.Those women who think they can be attacked by someone with acid they should keep their faces covered by hijab and a plastic bottle full of water all the time with themwhile they move out ,. It will serve two purposes,first an attacker will not recognize the target women in hijab second if he recognizes the target and throws the acid the targetted women should quickly take out the water bottle and first wash the eyes and face and then other exposed body part ,so simple as that why worry! every one is reading news of these acid attacks but no one has the intelligence to suggest the remedy, I will request all the women to atleast carry a water bottle with them ,they can help immediately any poor lady attacked by acid. Maj,rtd,Anwar alam.Cardiff,UK
concerned Jun 20, 2012 07:07am
Sir. I want to enlighten u when u make a suggestion " Govt must rise to the ocassion", this Govt aint gonna do anything.. A Hospital for Acid victims was to be put up in Multan. The NGO, run by a famous beautician, rasied crores of rupees. Nothing was done on ground. While one part of the Govt is investigating massive corruption when the proofs were given, the other awarded her Pride of Peformance for the contribution to the cause. To stall the inquiry, the NGO got the accountant arrested, sayig he has stolen the records. After a trial, the accountant was found not guilty. And the Govt is sleeping over the inquiry as connections work in our country.
BNS Jun 20, 2012 10:43pm
This is purely a criminal act and has nothing to do with religion. The best approach is to make the punishment so tough that it acts as a real deterrent also of course to prosecute the culprits. In adddition to punishment there should be substantial fine that is payable to the victim for rehabilitation.