The provincial assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) is divided on a bill that intends to tackle the issue of domestic violence against women. According to the religious parties’ members, some clauses of the bill are in contradiction with Islam. However, the draft of the proposed law that is available on the website of the provincial assembly suggests nothing that goes against Islam. The opposition members argue that the bill should be sent to the Council of Islamic Ideology (CCI). But their argument holds no water, as there is no such clause in the proposed bill that goes against the Quran and Hadith.

Is prohibiting domestic violence un-Islamic? Or is the constitution of a “District Protection Committee” in violation of the Quran and Hadith? Meetings of such committee? Or the powers and functions of the suggested committee are in contradiction with Islamic principles? Fortunately, any person having a basic understanding of Islam will find nothing in the proposed bill that goes against Islam. What is unfortunate is, however, that the opposition to the bill is just maintaining the status quo using Islam as a veil.

The government should proceed with implementing the law in consultation with the rest of the opposition parties. If there is any room for improvement in the bill, it should consult all other parties. But the provincial government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) should not kneel before the few who think of the law un-Islamic, because it’s not. While opposing the bill on religious grounds, the opposing voices have spit out the real intention behind their opposition to the bill. They say that the bill is “in conflict with the culture and values of the local society.” This is the real reason for resistance. It is this chauvinism that is resisting the change, not religion.

Sadly, KP is the only province that lacks legislation in this regard. Ideally, the members from the religious parties should have taken the lead to end the widespread menace of domestic violence. But those who claim their right on the interpretation of the most progressive religion that is Islam are taking all possible steps to make it a stagnant one. But as said earlier, the KP government should go with implementing the bill that is slightly varied from such Acts in Sindh and Balochistan. If the same laws are not questioned in those two provinces, why are the religious parties making hue and cry against the bill in KP? Can we not call this hypocrisy? It is.