International Women’s Day: Find out why it is being celebrated
ISLAMABAD: International Women’s Day is being observed today worldwide in acknowledgement of achievements of women in various fields irrespective of their linguistic, cultural, ethnic or political background.
It is a day to commemorate the achievements of women and to raise awareness for the social and political equality of women around the world. It calls for challenging the status quo for women’s equality and vigilance inspiring positive change.
How the day came into global prominence?
International Women’s Day first emerged from the activities of labour movements at the turn of the twentieth century in North America and across Europe. International Women’s Day has assumed global significance for women in developed and developing countries alike.
The growing international women’s movement, which has been strengthened by four global United Nations women’s conferences, has helped make the commemoration a rallying point to build support for women’s rights and participation in the political and economic arenas.
The United Nations in 1975, declared 8th March as the International Women’s Day.
Increasingly, International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.
When it was set up ?
An annual “international women’s day” was first organised by the German socialist and theorist Clara Zetkin along with 100 delegates from 17 countries in March 1911.
The event was marked by more than one million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland, with hundreds of demonstrations across the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
The United Nations first began celebrating the day on 8 March in 1975, and each year has given focus to women’s status around the globe.
The current goals fit in with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
What is the situation in Pakistan?
In Pakistan the crimes against women including honor killings, acid attacks and gender-related offences have been on rise. But the country has also made progress with regard to laws protecting women passed over the last four years, including the Benazir Income Support Programme Act, the anti-sexual harassment legislation and empowering the National Commission on Status of Women (NCSW).
Pakistan has to move ahead and take more steps for providing its daughters an equal status in the society with passage of laws and ensuring the mechanisms for enforcement of these laws to make the country a better place for the women.
Women in Pakistan have played a tremendous role in all spheres of life including politics, business, sports, information and technolog.
Fatima Jinnah, sister of country’s founding father Muhammad Ali Jinnah, was one of the leading figures alongside many women for the country’s freedom.
Benazir Bhutto became the first woman of the world to lead a Muslim country in capacity of a Prime Minister whereas Malala Yousafzai was also rewarded the Nobel Award for Peace.
Arfa Karim became the youngest Microsoft IT professional at the age of 13.
Pakistan Women’s Cricket Team had also won international tournaments as well while Naseem Hameed became the fastest woman by winning the 100-metre race in the regional games in Dhaka.