(originally posted on 10th March 2021)
Throughout the year, we see many an occasion for people to group together for a cause greater than themselves. The purpose of any protest or rally is not to incite violence, but to spotlight an issue in order to bring about change or awareness. All through the history of Pakistan, there have been multiple events and examples where protests , against controversies ranging from outrage against France for blasphemous material in unity with the Muslim world to even localized issues like the government takeover of mosques and seminaries. But the main issue
The 8th of March is celebrated worldwide as International Woman’s Day, with the entire month ‘dedicated’ to women in the USA. In both cases, the occasion is to celebrate and to commemorate the legacy left behind by them as well as their continuing contributions to society. Their every occupation is remembered, from a high-ranking profession like being a CEO of major company to even the honorable title of mother, the most respectable job of them all. Personalities like Malala Yousafzai (an activist for the right to education), Ayesha Farooq and Marium Mukhtiar (fighter pilots known for their skill and determination) and even Fatima Jinnah herself are recognized and held in high regard., But this day is also held to disclose the unfairness and hardships that is unfortunately dealt to the majority of the female populace.
It is no secret that the majority of Pakistani women do not get their fair share of respect and admiration. More often than not, cases arise where women are the victim of acid attacks, honor killings and other unfortunate circumstances. These lamentable situations give them a reason to speak out against the unfairness that they have to face, and no better occasion exists than International Woman’s Day. The ‘Aurat March’ is a annually held rally that acts as a platform that allows women (and transwomen) to voice their opinions and point out unfair transgressions targeted towards them. While the currently-ongoing pandemic is not helping matters, it still did not stop eager participants of both genders to voice their opinions in order to help their fellow woman.
While the date has already passed, the struggle of women still continues. 8th March might be just a date, International Women’s Day might be just another ‘holiday’, but Aurat March is a persevering idea. It is a necessary movement, a revolution that can help spread the awareness on the everyday struggles of the common woman. They have every right to voice their opinion as their common man. To all the hardworking businesswomen, drivers, advocates, activists and even all the mothers, this one goes out for you.
If you wish to contribute to the wellbeing of the opposite gender, feel free to donate to the Pink Ribbon, Malala Fund and/or the Aurat Foundation. You can also visit the Aurat March Twitter profile for more information.