LAHORE - Minister for Women Development Hameeda Waheeduddin has urged women to read all the clauses before signing Nikah Nama (marriage contract) and understand the significance of rights, including Haq Mehr, divorce and maintenance.

Speaking at the launch of a training programme for Nikah registrars and local government officials at Jinnah Hall on Tuesday, she said a Nikah Nama could potentially empower a woman. The Punjab Commission on the Status of Women had hosted the training.

The minister acknowledged the need for capacity-building of registrars to ensure better results for women. She emphasised the significance of women’s participation in boosting the well-being of the society.

Chairperson PCSW Fauzia Viqar said 47 thousand Nikah Registrars and Union Council Secretaries would be trained with the aim to ensure accurate filling of Nikah Nama. She informed the participants about the objectives of the project which was sensitization of stakeholders to women’s rights in a marriage and how they could be protected through the Nikah Nama. She further stated that the duty of a Nikah Registrar was protection of a woman’s rights. She added that complaints received through PCSW’s helpline showed frequent incidence of early age marriages in Punjab which could be attributed to financial constraints, social pressure and so called values. Lord Mayor Mubasher Javed highlighted the importance of this strategic partnership between PCSW and LG&RD Department due to which 2,371 Nikah registrars and UC secretaries and chairmen were trained.  Project Manager TNR PCSW Shahid Iqbal informed the audience of this initiative’s plan for upcoming training in Lahore and Kasur districts.