THE CRIMINAL LAW AMENDMENT
The Ministry of Women Development promotes the rights of women to security & life. It took substantive initiative, first in South Asia, by promulgating law titled “The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2004”. The new law on honor killing makes change in the existing criminal law to deal effectively with offenders. The salient features of this law are as under.
CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE (AMENDMENT) ORDINANCE, 2006
The President of Pakistan promulgated an Ordinance on 8th July, 2006 by amending section 497 of CRPC to grant bail to women in jails on charges other than terrorism and murder. According to the information provided by provinces, eight hundred and forty eight (848) female prisoners have been released from different prisons of Pakistan under this new law.
PROTECTION OF WOMEN (CRIMINAL LAW) AMENDMENT ACT, 2006
Protection of Women (Criminal’s Laws Amendment) Act, 2006 has been enacted on 1st December, 2006 to provide relief and protection to women against misuse and abuse of law and to prevent their exploitation. The object of this Act is to bring the laws related to Zina and Qazf, in particular, in conformity with the stated objectives of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the Constitutional mandate. This Act contains 30 important amendments in the existing ‘Offence of Zina and Qazf (Enforcement of Hadood Ordinance 1979)’, the ‘Pakistan Penal Code (Act XLV of 1860)’, the Code of Criminal Procedure 1898 (Act V of 1898)’ and the ‘Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act 1939’.
INITIATIVE FOR LEGISLATION ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND PREVENTION OF ANTI WOMEN PRACTICES
I. Domestic Violence, hidden in nature and considered as a private matter involves physical, sexual, emotional, social, economic and psychological abuse committed by a person. There is a need to provide legal mechanism for protection of victims of domestic violence inline with the provision of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. To address this alarming issue, Ministry of Women Development and Ministry of Law have been actively involved in the finalization of a draft Bill called Domestic Violence against Women and Children (Prevention and Protection) Bill, 2007, by the National Assembly Standing Committee on Women Development. The draft Bill has been forwarded to the concerned Ministries/Divisions/Departments for views/comments.II. With a view to banishing harmful age-old customary practices like forced marriages, marriage with Quran, Vani-Swara etc. A Draft Bill under the title, “Prevention of Anti-Women Practices (Criminal Law Amendments), Bill 2006” moved by a former parliamentarian is under study/review by the Select Committee of National Assembly.