Pakistan: backlash to ‘un-Islamic’ women’s law

A conference of religious groups and political parties convened by the Jamaat-e-Islami party asked the Pakistani government on March 15 to repeal a new "un-Islamic" law that provides protections for female victims of abuse. The Women's Protection Act (PDF), passed last month by Punjab province, establishes an abuse hotline, sets up shelter homes, provides for imprisonment for violations of protection from abuse orders and establishes investigation panels. The religious groups claim the law violates the Koran, denouncing it as in conflict with both Islam and the Pakistani constitution. Earlier this month the Council of Islamic Ideology, the government's religious advising body, declared the Women's Protection Act un-Islamic.

From Jurist, March 15. Used with permission.

Note: There was a similar controversy 10 years ago when Pakistan's national government passed a Women's Protection Law that overturned the infamous "Hudood Ordinances," under which women could be punished for being raped. The status of women in Pakistan has been given greater urgency since the 2012 attempted assassination of Malala Yousafzai.