Live or die, don’t come back. This sentence is inherited to a Pakistani girl by her parents when she starts a tempestuous journey of her married life, and it keeps echoing in her ears till she descends into a grave. Just due to this notion that the real
place of living for a girl is her in-laws’ house, the Pakistani women are forced to suffer a number of inhuman agonies and hardships throughout their lives.
When a girl is wed, she suddenly becomes alien for her own home where she takes birth and spends a reasonable period of life. Her parents pay thanks to God for getting free of a ‘burden’ and strictly instruct her to worship her husband and his siblings as
she has to live with them forever.
It is true that a girl must own her in-laws’ house and try to embellish it with her affection, love and care; but what about the gruesome compromises that she has to make in order to save the esteem and ego of her parents who are averse to share their house
and money with her once she takes divorce.
Living with compromises and compulsions is tantamount to live in a torture cell of some dungeon. The Pakistani girls have to bear all taunts, scolds, criticism and insult that their in-laws inflict upon her. They have to sacrifice their individual identity
and follow what their husbands impose on them regardless of whether it is right or wrong. They have to become puppets and robots.
It is the reason, you read in the newspapers every morning the stories of wives’ arsons, murders, physical tortures, miscarriages and many other such type of savage incidents. It is the reason that our women have to live like enchained slaves, even below
the level of humanity. It is the reason our courts are packed with the family cases. Is all this mess not anti-human? Surely it is.
The religion we follow—sorry to say we do not follow, but just profess— gives rights to a woman to seek divorce or get separate from her husband if she has any type of legal and justified problem. Once an Arab lady came to Prophet (PBUH) and said that
she did not want to pull up with her husband further. He asked the reason and she clearly told that she did not like him. The Great Prophet (PBUH) uttered that she can leave her husband whenever she wants.
What we do is to simply erase the clause of female divorce (Khula) from marriage papers (Nikha Nama) before wedding a girl with a person whom, in majority cases, she even does not know. To the extreme of oppression, we command her not to look back in any
This is not fair at all. This is against the human dignity. How shameful this is that we are courageously doing this brutality in the 21st century where our fellow human beings are conquering the stars.
If we want to create a healthy society, we will have to rubbish these taboos. We will have to give women their due rights. Parents will have to own their daughters from their birth to death. Moreover, we should change our concepts regarding divorces by considering
the divorced women as normal human beings and accommodating them in the mainstream social set up. Our Ulemas (religious teachers) should impart people the exact teachings of Islam. In short, every woman should have freedom to break up her marital bond if she
does not feel comfortable on legal, ethical and religious grounds.