Our Correspondent Chitral
The status of women in Chitral has greatly improved over the last three decades ensuring their participation in all walks of life including education, health, service delivery, politics and sports.
This was observed at a function on ‘ political and economic emancipation of women in Chitral’ in ‘Hi- Tech Idara for women’ for the needy and poor women in Zargarandeh.
The speakers from different walks of life said that the women folk in Chitral were proving their mettle in all walks of life and contributed significantly to improve the living standard of their respective families.
The former member of zila council from Garam Chashma, Sifat Gul said that the role of women folk in Chitral is not narrow as it used to be till 1980s when their enrolment in schools and treatment in hospitals was a taboo.
“In my childhood in 1970s, it was not even imaginable for the girls to be admitted in the schools but now the situation has taken an about-turn as the enrolment of girls is 100 percent in the schools.
The narrow-mindedness against woman has evaporated from society leading to the greater degree of freedom for her mobility ”, she said.
Retired professor Syed Shamsun Nazar Fatimi said that the woman from Chitral has entered even the upper house of the parliament, entered the central superior services, emerged as independent entrepreneur, earned Ph.D. degree from foreign universities and arisen as an accomplished sportswoman second to none.
He terms the day an epoch making in 1986 when the first ever women village organization was established in a village in Karimabad for rural development activities by Aga Khan Rural Support Program.
“Present on the occasion, I discerned the zeal and zest among the illiterate women who were affixing their thumb impressions on the membership papers one by one and it virtually proved the first step in the 1000-mile journey of women empowerment which has reached its zenith here.
Based on the theme of community participation, the program carried out the development projects through the village organizations and as such the women were encouraged to complete them independently and it filled them with self-confidence and socialized them”, he said.
Nusrat Jabeen, the district officer of social welfare and women empowerment department, said that women in Chitral were fully aware of their rights as given in the constitution of the country and they possessed the impulse of fighting injustices and maltreatment.
She said that the women in Chitral were second to no other areas of the province regarding their awareness who ran organizations independently for the welfare of the women folk ranging from providing self-employment opportunities to provide free legal aid to the distressed women besides being instrumental in the local government system.