Salma Jahangir

PESHAWAR: Not only a divorced woman, but a divorced man also faces taunts in society.

Nauman Ahmed, who has left his area and now lives in Bahadur Killi village in Peshawar, said he has to leave his area due to taunts by people. “Are you really impotent, or your wife spread such rumours to get rid of you,” this kinds of questions turned the life of Nauman miserable.

According to a survey, the divorce ration in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa increased by almost 50 percent during coronavirus lockdowns.

Nauman said his marriage was arranged with his cousin who did not like him. He said that on the marriage night, his wife took oath from him on the Holy Quran to consider her his ‘sister’ and they would not have any physical relations. He said his wife then told her relatives that her husband is impotent and the rumour spread like jungle fire.

Nauman said the girl wanted divorce which he silently gave and shifted to another area where no one knew about his family. Then he married another girl in a humble family and was blessed with a son nine months after the marriage, and now he has two children and living happily.

Asma Bibi, who works as Assistant Complaint Officer at Human Rights Commission Peshawar, said about 10,000 cases have been filed by women in family courts till July 2021. She said women complainants mostly bring cases about alleged domestic violence, separation, forced marriage, husband’s indulgence in use of drugs or relations with other women. She said about 80 family cases arrived with such courts this year and 95 percent of these cases have been resolved.

Shamim, a local woman, said she wants to take separation from her husband, but he has threatened to kill her if she went to the court. She said her husband is not happy with the birth of her daughter and now he is planning another marriage, after which she along with her daughter has come to her parents’ house. She said she is also worried about the negative image a divorced woman has to carry in society.

The Family Court Act was approved in Pakistan in 2015 and its clause 06 of Section 10 had made the process of divorce and separation easier. More women are utilising this law to take separation from their husbands which has contributed to increase in divorce ratio.

 

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