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Legal vaccum for Pakistani Hindus regarding marriage laws

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Islamabad: There is no marriage law for Hindus living in Pakistan, a leading daily said on Friday, noting that this “legal vacuum naturally creates a multitude of issues for Pakistani Hindus, especially the women”.

An editorial “Hindu marriage bill” in Dawn on Friday said that while many politicians are quick to issue public statements about the rights of minorities in Pakistan, when it comes to taking practical steps to secure these rights, there is very little to show.

“A prime example of this strange paradox is the decades-old issue of legislation related to Hindu marriage.

“At the current time, there is no marriage law for the millions of Hindus living in Pakistan. This legal vacuum naturally creates a multitude of issues for Pakistani Hindus, especially the women of the community,” said the daily.

It is said that Hindu women have to face problems in proving their relationships when dealing with official dom, while widows are particularly disadvantaged.

“Without official proof of relationships, getting government documents issued or moving forward on any other activity which involves documentation from opening bank accounts to applying for visas becomes next to impossible for any citizen.”

The daily wondered how the Hindu community is supposed to cope?

Forced conversions are also facilitated by the lack of documentation of Hindu marriages,some experts point out.

Despite the fact that many of these points were raised at a seminar in Islamabad on Wednesday by the chairman of the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Law and Justice which is supposed to approve the Hindu marriage bill to be tabled in the house he was unable to convince the committee to give the green signal at a meeting on the same day.

The editorial went on to say that while family law is now a provincial subject, the federating units can ask the centre, through resolutions passed by their respective assemblies, to legislate on the matter.

“This tardiness and lack of political will are inexcusable. If the parties leading the Sindh and Punjab governments are serious about their commitment to minority rights, they should pass the resolutions without further delay in order to do away with the hurdles in the way of a Hindu marriage law.

“Sindh should show particular alacrity, as most of Pakistan’s Hindus reside in this province. Failure to take timely action and pass the law will only compound this decades-old injustice and expose our leaders’ claims of respecting minority rights as hollow,” it added.(IANS)(image: hinduexistence.org)

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IMF: Empowering Women Is Smart Economics

IMF says, Getting more women into formal workforce is priority for India

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Ken Kang
Ken Kang. IANS

India must focus as a priority on ensuring that more women work in the formal sector as it continues with labour reforms, according to Ken Kang, the deputy director in International Monetary Fund (IMF) Asia Pacific Department.

While “in recent years India has made very impressive progress in reforms,” he said that “looking ahead there are important policy priorities” and listed three among them.

“One, is to continue improvements in product and labour market reforms with a focus on increasing formal female labour participation to improve the business environment, and reduce complex regulations, but also to address supply bottlenecks, particularly in the agricultural sector and distribution networks,” Kang said at a news conference on Friday in Washington.

As one of India’s major reform achievements, he mentioned the “introduction of flexible inflation targeting and of a statutory monetary policy which has helped to strengthen the monetary policy framework.”

Working woman
Working woman. Pixabay

The Reserve Bank of India Act was amended in 2016, to provide for a Monetary Policy Committee that decides on the interest rate required for achieving the inflation target set by the government in consultation with the bank.

The other achievements include the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the “major recapitalisation plan for the public-sector banks in order to accelerate the work out of nonperforming loans, as well as made some important legal improvements through a new insolvency and bankruptcy law,” Kang said.

“We expect and hope that the reform momentum continues,” he added.

Also Read: Newly Developed Tool to Battle HIV in Women

“We are not saying that India’s structural reform speed will slow down because of elections,” Changyong Rhee, the IMF director of the Asia Pacific Department said.

“What we are saying is that the growth momentum and the structural reform momentum should continue despite the election period. So there is something misquoted,” he added.

On Thursday, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde had said at a news conference on Thursday, according to the IMF transcript: “We have seen and we are seeing — I am not sure that we will be seeing in the next few months given the elections that are coming up — major reforms that we had recommended and advocated for a long time.”  IANS

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