- An uneducated family can only go so far
It is time the people of this country realise what is going on and insist on change, before the entire nation breaks down. The clampdowns on the press, the judicial deficiencies, and interference by various institutions in matters that are not their remit, and sheer incompetence at every single level, all these are matters of the greatest concern. But worst of them all, the hardest to swallow is the brutality at the family level.
There are laws in this country that aim to protect women in cases of domestic violence, forced marriage, or the myriad other ways in which women are abused. But none of these laws appear to be enforced. At times young men are brutalised as well as their female counterparts. The most ghoulish of such cases took place last week in Nasirabad in Baluchistan, when a twenty two year old man had his eyes gouged out with a spoon by his own father, assisted by four of his sons. The reason for this demonic act was that the young man wished to marry his girlfriend and had told his family so. A similar case took place in Mexico recently, as part of a satanic rite. Why are our role models always so terrible?
In Karachi recently, a couple who married a couple of years ago was shot dead by members of the woman’s family, because theirs was a marriage of choice. There have been many more such cases. In the period of one year, the Independent Human Rights Commission says at least 280 such killings have taken place, a figure the Commission says is much less than the actual number.
Medieval systems such as jirgas that prescribe horrific punishments for ‘affairs’ between men and women are allowed to exist and thrive. It is almost unknown for the murderers to receive the justice that is due to them. Aside from anything else, there are too many loopholes in the law. In the case of Qandeel Baloch, for example, the state had to turn complainant to prevent the victim’s family from forgiving the brother, which would have allowed him to get away with the murder of his sister. The only reason the state was more proactive in her case was that Qandeel’s murder was very much in the limelight and hit the headlines in Pakistan, and other countries as well.