KARACHI - A large number of politicians, social workers and representatives of minority groups have expressed grave concern over the discriminatory attitude of the masses and government towards the minorities and demanded the government to amend country’s bylaws, protecting their rights.Passing a resolution, the participants of a day long conference “Mainstreaming of Religious Minority in Pakistan” arranged by Forum for Human Rights Pakistan in collaboration with Centre for Peace and Development at a local hotel on Friday, demanded that total number of assembly seats reserved for minorities must be increased in accordance with the increasing population.“Though, the minorities have been given right of double voting, but practically they have to elect Muslim candidates. While for their own representatives, they don’t have the right to vote various political parties nominate their candidates who could not be called their genuine representatives; therefore such system must be abolished at ones and their representatives must be elected,” said the participants passing the resolution.They also demanded to make changes in the syllabus, which is based on the discriminations. They said that the country’s media must highlight the issues faced by minorities. They demanded that the government must ensure to implement the 5 percent quota allocated for minorities in public sector job.On the occasion, former Senator Taj Haider, MPA Pitanbar Sewani, HRCP member Indar Ahuja, Action Aid Programme Manager Sindh Shah Jahan Baloch, Karachi Bar Association President Naeem Qureshi, URC representative Zahid Farooq and others addressed on the occasion. Forum for Human Rights Pakistan formally known as SAFHR Pakistan has been working for human rights in different settings of the region. However, FHRP’s areas of concern particularly included women, minorities, youth and education. FHRP has been carrying out the awareness project female voters, making them play vital role in the political process where policy makers, lawyers, media, educationalists and social activists have been part of discussions regarding women rights. Moreover, FHRP has an extensive experience of mobilising, organising and motivating the community of Sindh to take part in the development, awareness activities and programmes with par focus on Governance, Education and Religious Minorities.

This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 30-Mar-2013 here.