DACCA: A women’s rally, held here today [Jan 21], demanded reservation of 20 seats for women in the National Assembly — 12 from East Pakistan and eight from West Pakistan.

The rally, held at Baitul Mukarram, was sponsored by different women’s organisations of the City, pledged to carry forward the struggle which was launched last year by the students on the basis of an 11-point programme. The rally was held in memory of the martyrs, including a woman — Anwara Khatun — who laid down their lives last year during the mass upsurge.

Presided over by Mrs Khadija Chowdhury, the rally was addressed by Mrs Badrunissa Ahmed, Mrs Amena Begum, Mrs Kamrunnahar Laity, Mrs Manorama Basu and Mrs Matia Chowdhury.

Addressing the rally Mrs Amena Begum — one-time Acting General Secretary of Awami League — said that as the 11-point programme embodied the demands of the people she did not hesitate to support it. She deplored the use of force for propagating any political view and feared that this may dim election prospects. She said that any programme which did not include the demands of women would be opposed by the womenfolk. She expressed her determination to carry forward the struggle for the achievement of the rights of the people.

Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2020