ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Peoples rejected the call given by some elements threatening the proposed women march by women activists on March 8 on the eve of International Women Day as “unwarranted, uncalled for and totally unacceptable”. In a statement Sunday, secretary general of the Pakistan Peoples’ Party Parliamentarians former Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the constitution guaranteed freedom of association and freedom of assembly to everyone that could not be curtailed by any one by hurling threats. He said that it was unfortunate that even some of those who claimed to uphold the supremacy of the Constitution were talking about using force to deny the right to women to peaceful assembly, peaceful protest and freedom of expression.

He said that the PPP is committed to upholding the rights of women including their right to hold peaceful demonstrations on the eve of International Women Day to voice their grievances and demand an end to discrimination against them.

He said that Pakistan is also a signatory of the Convention on Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) that made it obligatory to end all forms of discrimination against women. Women and their organizations in the country are within their rights to demand implementation of commitments made to them for ending all forms of discrimination.

He said that it was unfortunate that the Commission on the Status of Women was dysfunctional for the past almost one year and asked the government to take immediate steps to make it functional. It seems that the absence of the Commission has encouraged some elements to hurl threats to women demanding their legitimate rights and ending discrimination. He called upon the government to ensure that women were given all protection by it and no one was allowed to take the law into their hands.