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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Anjum Niaz Rages: Will Sherry Cheer?

Next is the un-vetted appointment of Hazar Khan Bajarani as our education minister. Obviously, the man has come under a lot of flak from various quarters for his dubious role in heading a tribal jirga which handed over little girls in marriage. Shame! The minister is mum on the issue. If he is innocent of the alleged crime, why has he not spoken up? Instead, his poor ministry has had to put up a mealy-mouth defence of him. Why get the education ministry to do his dirty work; why can't the minister himself stand up and tell us all to shut up because he is innocent? By the way, what "valuable services" has the minister rendered to the nation according to the same statement put out for the press? We wait with bated breath for the Ministry of Education to enlighten us on Bajarani's heroics.

Un-vet 2 is minister Israrullah Zehri. He too is silent. The last time he opened up his mouth was in the Senate when he vociferously defended honour killings that had come to light. The government has mysteriously gone quiet over the alleged live burial of women accused of violating tribal law. Will the report ever filter out to us? Probably not. Will the report based on the findings of MNA Nafisa Shah on the alleged mauling to death of 17-year-old Taslim Solangi ever pass our eyes? Probably not. A woman in an email to me wonders why the minister for information is silent. "I have been reading continuously in the papers recently that Ms Sherry Rehman is courageously forging ahead with her initiative of purposing a bill on legislation against harassment of women in the workplace. A commendable effort, for which she should be lauded. How come then there is deafening silence from her ... zipped lips...about the recent appointments by Zardari/Gilani hukoomat of two ministers who have actively promoted abominations against women and minors like Vani and honour killings in the name of tradition? Does she have nothing to say on that? Those acts go beyond harassment....forget about women entering the workforce, what about the minor girls who may not even make it to adolescence if men like Zehri and Bajarani get their way. Why is Ms Rehman suddenly stricken mute when it comes to explaining her president/PM's controversial appointments? Are they not sending out mixed messages to the hapless awaam?"


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