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Rape in Pakistan

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The Simorgh Collective and Shazreh Hussein, Simorgh 1990 
Rape is an act of violence and aggression. Rape can take place anywhere, at anytime and tragically – by any man. The only operative factor is the intention of the rapist and the power granted to him over women by the socio-economic hierarchies of a patriarchal culture. Sadly, the response from society to this act of intrinsic brutality is complete silence. Evasion and silence greets us everywhere. Doctors, police personnel, individuals – all seem unable to go beyond generalizations and pious disclaimers.It is necessary not only to bring about an awareness of the frequency with which rape occurs but also to arrive at an understanding of the seeming contradiction – the constant fear of rape and violence on the one hand and the silence that renders it invisible on the other – through which our responses, both as victims and as members of society are structured. This pamphlet is an attempt to break the silence that surrounds rape.


Violence against Women and their quest for Justice

Violence against Women and their quest for Justice

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Shahla Zia, Simorgh 1998
An interview based study of women’s experiences in Pakistan’s Law Courts.
“[A]s far as South Asia is concerned, women… live in very depressing conditions. If they want justice, they have to fight everyone right from the very beginning. They have to fight their family, they have to fight the police, they have to fight even their advocates- all of them say… it is better if it is sorted out at home… your family, your entire community will be disgraced if you take the matter to court.”

 Justice (Retd.) Nasir Aslam Zahid,
 Supreme Court of Pakistan

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