Rights, Inclusion Of Marginalised Groups One Of Govt's Priorities: George

Rights, inclusion of marginalised groups one of govt's priorities: George

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 30th Nov, 2023) Caretaker Minister for Human Rights, Khalil George Wednesday said people from all groups, religions, identities are equal citizens of Pakistan. Rights and inclusion of marginalised groups in Pakistan has been one of the priorities for the government, as various laws and policies are testament to its commitment for inclusion of the vulnerable groups in the country.

The Federal Minster was speaking at the concluding session of the two day Aawaz II Learning Forum, organised by British Council, Peace & Justice Network and Omar Asghar Khan Foundation here.

Aawaz II launched the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence (GBV) campaign by disseminating messages through radio, social media and community meetings in 37 districts of in KP and Punjab.

Community members shared on how activities organised by Aawaz II brought change to people’s lives through information dissemination related to preventions of child marriage, facilitation of disability certificates for persons with disabilities and civil registration of women from marginalised households, religious minorities and transgender persons.

The Federal Ombudsperson, Ms Fauzia Viqar, spoke on how “women and other groups in need should reach out to duty bearers not only for redressal but to make government institutions accountable to improve access to service delivery.”

Andrew Bowden, Group Head of FCDO in Pakistan, in his inaugural statement spoke on how Aawaz II had provided a model where government, civil society and communities could work together on important issues such as gender-based violence and interfaith harmony.

Dr. Yasmin Zaidi, Aawaz II Team Lead, highlighted that more than 40,000 Aawaz II volunteers and youth were working with local communities to address GBV, child marriage, and social exclusion.

Affan Javed, Senior Programme Manager, shared that the British Council believed in inclusive and participatory behaviour change approach for sustainable development.

Affan Javed, Senior Programme Manager, shared that the British Council believed in inclusive and participatory behaviour change approach for sustainable development.

Nayab Ali, a transgender rights activist applauded the inclusive approach of Aawaz II for including transgender persons as members of Aawaz II forums and facilitating transgender persons linkages with government official for redressal of their issues.

Mumtaz Mughal, renown women rights activist said that community groups such as village forums are important for strengthening leadership of vulnerable persons including women and also useful for spreading messages of women’s rights, and social cohesion.

Representatives from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), British Council, government departments, civil society and community leaders from 37 districts of KP and Punjab attended the event and contributed significantly in the discussions around various themes of Aawaz II.

Other speakers included Provincial Ombudsperson KP Ms. Rukhshanda Naz, Additional Secretary, Social Welfare Special education and Women Empowerment Department Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Muhammad Farooq, Secretary Provincial

Commission on the Status of Women Punjab Ms Nabila Javaid, Director Inclusive Registration NADRA, Ms Reema Aftab, Nadeem Ashraf Member Punjab National Commission on Human Rights and experts on the rights of women, religious minorities, women with disabilities and transgender persons.