ISLAMABAD - Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed lamented the brutal murder of the 25-year-old pregnant woman who was stoned to death at the doorsteps of the Lahore High Court last week while the police watched that happening.

Justice Sh Azamt Saeed, the SC judge, expressed his concern in the inaugural ceremony of a one-week refresher course on “Gender Sensitisation and New Laws” for senior civil judges from all over Pakistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan here at the Federal Judicial Academy (FJA)/Centre of Excellence for Law and Judicial Education on Monday.

He said, “If you open any national newspaper, you will find several news items regarding ruthless murders of women. We are living in a society where newlywed women are burnt to death. We are living in a society where mothers invent the murder of their daughters. We are living in society where justice seekers are being killed in a broad daylight right under nose of police and in the presence of a crowd. This is the society in which we all are living today.”

He said, “Woman-hating or man’s ego-massaging against woman is a deep-rooted problem. Unfortunately, we take our serious problems for granted. We never address our problems properly based on facts and research. Research conducted on this very important social issue reveals that no punishment to the evildoers coupled with attitude of police and attitude of judges towards the victim encourages such mob frenzy incidents.”

Women hating is a concrete attitude; it is a concrete attitude problem. “We take those attitudes and adopt in our culture. Our attitudes are like dinosaurs, we still find polite ways to describe topics such as gender discrimination as gender-sensitisation.”

He said, “The demon lives in all of us but we have to confront it. Let’s confront it. Lets call spade a spade. The brutal murder of women on one pretext or another is not, and it should not be the law of the land. We should not allow men to do cruel things against women in the society. I know that these cruel things happen against women around the world. If we listen to the world media and go through the YouTube we come across several such horrible reports but my concern is my country.”

The judge said there is consensus among all sociologists that status given to women in any society reflects its civilisation. It is a rule of thumb. “Attitudes prevalent in our society have not been conducive towards them. You visit village after village in the rural areas, you will not find even a single inch of land inherited by women. Not only rural areas but also come to the well-settled areas of Lahore, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Karachi, Quetta if you ask any businessmen who started this business, he will reply My grandfather or father but he will not say that my grandmother or mother. This reflects our attitude towards women in our society.”

He said, “It is my personal observation. I could observe it when I was the chief justice of Lahore High Lahore that women become better judges if they are given a proper environment. They become focused and have less charges of corruption. Indeed, their requirements are treatable and those should be treated properly and we have to make sure that there should not be any discrimination against them.”