Role of women in progress of country highlighted

International women day

Staff Reporter

Australian Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan Brek Batley and Chairperson of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Commission for the Status of Women (KPCSW) Neelum Toru, in collaboration with Blue Veins and Trocaire Pakistan, launched a Google App today to improve the services offered to women survivors of gender-based violence.
The App ‘KPCSW’, that also works offline, will help women report cases of violence to KPCSW with features like text, voice and video messages, and MMS. The user-friendly App is free to download on Google Play Store and will provide useful information on pro women laws and approaching KPCSW for help.
Mr Brek Batley said, “Eliminating violence against women everywhere is a priority of the Australian Government and a core part of our foreign policy and aid program. We anticipate that this app will play a pivotal role in providing support services for survivors of gender-based violence, with information to access shelters, medical services or legal aid services. In doing so it will help improve the safety and welfare of women and girls across Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.”
International Women’s Day was celebrated at PCRWR Headquarters Islamabad in collaboration with International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, Technology Times, UNDP.
Speaking on the occasion guest of honour Ms. Bushra Mirza, Professor and Chairperson. Department of Biochemistry Quaid-e-Azam University emphasized women empowerment is directly related to development of society. She said if there is a woman behind every successful man, the supportive role of a man in the life of a successful woman cannot be ignore
Annual enrollment of female students with Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) has reached around 57 percent of total figures of 1.3 million, that contributes to the national goal, bringing the women in the main stream of the country’s socio-economic development.
This was stated by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Shahid Siddiqui while highlighting the singular role of the AIOU to this effect, on International Women Day that is celebrated world over on March 8.
In his message on the occasion, he said women empowerment will remain their special focus in all the academic programs, being carried out by University.
The 57 percent ratio of female enrolment reflects the University’s continuous efforts to bring them into the educational net, and enabling them to take part in the country’s socio-economic activities as equal partner.
A Mushaira was held on the occasion to highlight plight, struggle and success of women. Kishwar Naheed presided over the Mushaira and the conference. Among the panelists and poetesses included Yasmeen Hameed, Durr-e-Shehwar Tauseef, Ayesha Masood Malik, Mehmooda Ghazia, Dr Naheed Qamar, Nusrat Masood, Riffat Waheed, Rukhsana Sehar, Nida Rizvi, Farah Gondal and Parveen Tahir.
Kishwar Naheed was of the view that works of women writers and poetesses were being appreciated not only by the common public but critics also valued them greatly. In Urdu literature, particularly, women writers have done splendid contributions, she said. Helen M. Pataki, USAID-Pakistan Mission Director (Acting) was the guest of honour during the ceremony, whereas Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director, HEC, Dr. Samina Qadir, Vice Chancellor, Fatima Jinnah Women University, Rawalpindi, and Mr. Waseem Hashmi Syed, Advisor Human Resource Development, HEC were also present along with a large number of faculty members and students.
In his welcome address, Dr. Arshad Ali paid glowing tribute to Pakistani women, especially those associated with academia, and said women play a pivotal role in development of nations. He said ensuring gender equality through its programmes is among the foremost priorities of HEC. “HEC is committed to ensuring provision of equal opportunities to women in the higher education sector, as educated women guarantee a prosperous nation,” he asserted. He said it is the outcome of HEC’s initiatives that the female enrolment rate in higher education institutions since 2002 has increased from 32 per cent to 48 per cent.
A special event was also organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) to highlight and to emphasize women empowerment in society.
Senator Sherry Rehman of Pakistan People’s Party who was the chief guest on the occasion said the women have been on the forefront of democratic struggle in Pakistan’s political history. “We have seen the struggle of Fatima Jinnah, Benazir Bhuttoo and Asma Jahangir, who were the icon of resistance, peace and have been the champions of democracy,” she added. Though our destination is far away but we shouldn’t stop here and keep fighting and continue struggle for just and rights.

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