The Lahore High Court has said that the “Women’s March” cannot be stopped under the country’s constitution and law. On March 8, women will take to the streets across the country on Women’s Day.
Pakistan’s court has also said that the women who join the march “should follow decency and moral values.” At the same time, the court has asked the police to give full protection to the march. In Pakistan, on the occasion of International Women’s Day, a “Women’s March” is being organized all over the country. Thousands of women from Pakistan have participated in this event which has been going on for the last two years. Last month, a petition was filed against the Women’s March in the Lahore High Court stating that there are talk of immorality in such an event. The petition said that the agenda of such an event is to spread “condemnation and hatred” against Islam.
The court ordered the administration to decide with the organizers about the location of the march. Apart from women’s organizations and rights groups, members of LGBT community are also involved in this Women’s March, who have been demanding their rights. International human rights institutions have been expressing concern about the action being taken on rights activists in Pakistan in recent years. Saqib Jilani, advocate of the movement, told the news agency Reuters, “The court said in its remarks that the women joining the march should not ignore decency and moral values during sloganeering.” At the same time, he told that the court has asked to prepare a code of conduct, although according to him it already exists.
The local police has also been asked to provide complete security to the Women’s March. Police has submitted a report to the court that on March, Pakistan is under threat from militants of fundamentalist groups like Taliban. Police have told the court that it is ready to give protection to the march but it is necessary for the organizers to refrain from indulging in “controversial acts” in March.
Last year, conservative organizations registered objections to the slogans imposed during the march. Last year, women said “My body, my choice!” , “My body is not a battleground for you!” And “Stop being afraid of menstruation!” Like slogans were used. Following last year’s event, the organizers of the march faced threats, including threats of murder and rape. Before this year’s event, volunteers and organizers say that posters have been destroyed in Islamabad and Lahore.