The Elections of 2013 are indeed memorable in the history of Pakistan. On this day a record turnout of voters was observed. This massive turnout proved that the people of Pakistan love their country and want to bring positive changes through democratic means. These elections were a huge accomplishment, but some handicaps were faced in remote areas such as in the constituency PK 95 Lower Dir, were no woman used her right to vote! The religious and liberal parties, which include PPP, PTI, PML-N, JUI-F, JI, made an agreement among themselves that the women will not be allowed to vote. On May 11, the women of these areas remained confined to their homes and deprived of their legal right in the name of religion, culture and traditions.

The question is who gave these parties the right to stop women from voting in some areas, when the State provides them the right to vote? If the government was in cohorts with the religious extremists, and took this action, we see that there can be no free and fair elections in Pakistan as promised by ECP. The irony is that Pakistan People’s Party was in agreement to ban women from voting, when they themselves have run all their election campaign in the name of a woman, Benazir Bhutto. They appear to be very liberal and outspoken for the rights of women, when in reality they were also involved in this shameful agreement. How much longer will such hierocracies continue? I request the Election Commission of Pakistan to take some convincing actions against the involved parties and make sure that such incidents do not repeat themselves. 

RIDA MOHSIN,

Karachi, May17.