Rights Watch | 09th July 2020

Rights Watch

Domestic Violence Bill to be Tabled Today

The Domestic Violence (Protection and Prevention) Bill 2020, prepared by the Ministry of Human Rights, will be tabled in the National Assembly today. The bill already has approval from the Cabinet Committee for Disposal of Legislative Cases.

According to a report compiled by the Sustainable Social Development Organization using information from national and regional newspapers, domestic violence cases in Pakistan were up by 200% from January to March.

Journalist Arrested for Wife’s Murder

Rawalpindi police detain journalist and media activist Ali Salman Alvi on Wednesday, July 9 for allegedly murdering his wife, Sadaf Zahra, on June 29. The accused was nominated in the FIR report lodged at the Rawalpindi airport police station by the victim’s sister, who claimed that Sadaf was a victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her husband. On the day of the victim’s demise, her sister stated that she received a phone call at around 2PM from Ali who said Sadaf had “done something” to herself.

Upon arriving at the suspect’s home, Ali stood in the doorway while all the remaining rooms remained locked from the inside. Upon opening one such door, the deceased’s sister saw Sadaf hanging by a noose from the ceiling. According to the FIR, Ali had been repeatedly warned by his in-laws for being violent to his wife.

Ali has been booked under section 302 of the Pakistan Penal Code (qatl-i-amd).

Civil Defence to Enlist 6,000 Women

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Civil Defence is poised to enlist 6,000 women volunteers to tend to female affectees and prevent high female mortality rates during calamities. Male volunteers are unable to attend to women victims due to societal constraints, prompting the Directorate General Civil Defence to engage women volunteers.

Temple Construction Halted on Technical Grounds

Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Noor-ul-Haq Qadri stated on Wednesday, July 8 that the construction of the Shri Ram temple in Islamabad’s Sector H-9 cannot be questioned because the PTI government is committed to protecting the rights of minorities, including their freedom of worship. However, he pointed out that the issue lies in constructing the temple using public funds.

The matter had been referred to Prime Minister Imran Khan and the Council of Islamic Ideology, but there has been no word as of yet. Regarding the halting of the construction, he reiterated that it was due to technical concerns put forward by the Capital Development Authority.