PESHAWAR: Women rights activists took out a torch-bearing rally on the eve of International Women’s Day on Saturday despite rain to highlight that women deserved equality in society and were aware of their rights.
The walk was organised by Waak Control, a movement started by some women rights activists, including Sana Ijaz, Jamila Gilani, Laiba Yousafzai and Saima Munir. Shabina Ayaz from Aurat Foundation also joined the walk held on a busy road near the Peshawar Press Club .
The women activists said some elements tried to make this day controversial, but it was important for them to come out and let the world know that women in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa also were aware of their rights and wanted equality.
They chanted slogans, demanding right to education, right of inheritance, right to work and equal share in political, social and economic life.
Jamila Gilani, a former parliamentarian, said women in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were worst affected by terrorism and wanted peace and all opportunities to live their life as they wanted. Those who made this day controversial won’t be able to distract or discourage women from demanding equal rights as human beings, she stressed.
Sana Ijaz said despite unfavourable conditions and some security concerns women were out on the eve of International Women’s Day because they wanted equal treatment and rights like any other citizen of the country.
Shabina Ayaz, resident director of Aurat Foundation, said women needed to come out on the day and demand their equal share in political, social and economic life as the country could not progress without inclusion of women who made almost half of total population.
Dr Said Alam and few other rights activists also joined the women’s walk and said those who made women’s day controversial by objecting to some slogans had wrong perception. He said there was nothing wrong with women demanding their rights and control on their own lives. He said not only women men should also come out and support them in their demands for equal rights.
Published in Dawn, March 8th, 2020