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Islam, Women and Feminism ( 30 Dec 2021, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Pakistan Bar Council Plans To Resist Judge Ayesha Malik’s Rise To SC Superseding Senior Judges

New Age Islam News Bureau

30 December 2021

• Two Teenage Girl Victims Of Honour Killings Found In South-Eastern Iran

• First Wife Alone Can Challenge Husband’s Second Marriage: LHC

• Missouri Shooting Range In Suburban Kansas City Made Muslim Woman Remove Hijab

• Muslim And Jewish EMT Volunteers Join Forces, Resuscitate Ein Nakuba Woman

• Arab Women's Society of Guelph celebrates outstanding women

• Players Hail The Success Of First Saudi Women’s Regional Football League

• Saudi Justice Minister Visits All-Female Personal Status Court In Damman

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau



 Pakistan Bar Council Plans To Resist Judge Ayesha Malik’s Rise To SC Superseding Senior Judges


A file photo of Justice Ayesha Malik. — Photo courtesy Punjab Judicial Academy website


Nasir Iqbal

December 30, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s legal fraternity has started gearing up to put up effective resistance to what they believe another attempt to elevate a junior judge to the Supreme Court by superseding at least three competent, senior judges.

While the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) has called its meeting on Jan 5, 2022 to complete the unfinished agenda to elevate Justice Ayesha A. Malik of the Lahore High Court to the SC, the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) has called a meeting on Jan 3 to consider the matter and chalk out an appropriate strategy.

It may be recalled that on Sept 9, lack of consensus during an exte­nded meeting had forced the JCP to defer her elevation as the first-ever woman judge in Pakistan’s judicial history to enter the SC.

PBC Vice Chairman Khushdil Khan wrote letters to all the vice chairmen of executive committees, members of the JCP from the lawyers’ side, presidents of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) and the provincial and Islamabad Bar Councils and high court bar associations to attend the joint meeting scheduled to be held on Monday at PBC office.

The letter issued to different bar associations said the joint meeting was called to consider the elevation of the junior judge to the SC in what they called violation of the seniority principle. The letters recalled how Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Gulzar Ahmed again proposed the name of the junior judge from the LHC while superseding three senior judges including Chief Justice of the LHC Mohammad Ameer Bhatti.

The JCP was meeting on Jan 5 to consider the same name that had been earlier ‘disapproved’ by the JCP, the letter said. In this scenario, the joint meeting of lawyers was being called to chalk out a future course of action.

Balochistan High Court Bar Association President Majeed Kakar and PBC member from Balochistan Munir Kakar also dubbed the elevation of the junior judge as an attempt to trample the seniority principle. They emphasised that Justice Malik was being denied the right to become the chief justice of the LHC.

Instead of her, the most deserving judge who should be elevated to the Supreme Court was Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Athar Minallah, they observed, adding that he should be nominated by the JCP to become the judge of the top court.

Meanwhile, a meeting of the executive committee of the PBC under the chairmanship of Mohammad Masood Chishti in its Wednesday meeting also adopted a resolution endorsing the statement of its vice chairman highlighting the need to adhere to the seniority principle and to launch countrywide protests.

The resolution also unanimously praised the illustrious career of former Justice Sarmad Jalal Usmani who became JCP member, stating that he remained an independent judge and refused to take oath under the Provisional Constitution Order and held his ground against the worst form of dictatorship and always stood for the rule of law and the Constitution while adhering to the principle of good conscience and justice.

After his appointment as JC member, the PBC and public at large expect the same level of steadfastness and perseverance for principle of seniority in appointment of judges to the superior judiciary, the resolution stated, adding that the council reiterated its consistent stance to stand for the principle of seniority.

Earlier on Sept 9, lack of consensus during an extended meeting had compelled the JCP to defer her elevation. As a consequence, PBC Vice Chairman Khushdil Khan had expressed his serious reservations and concerns regarding the move to, what he called an attempt to violate the seniority principle for elevation of judges to the Supreme Court and High Court. In a statement, the PBC vice chairman also emphasised that it was a consistent stance of the legal fraternity that judges should be elevated/appointed on the principle of seniority in all courts and that the ‘pick and choose’ practice must be stopped.

Four of the eight JCP members on Sept 9 namely Justice Maqbool Baqar, Justice Sardar Tariq Masood, former judge Dost Mohammad Khan and PBC representative Akhtar Hussain had opposed the idea, whereas the CJP, senior puisine judge Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Law Minister Barrister Farogh Naseem and Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Khalid Jawed Khan had favoured Justice Malik. Justice Qazi Faez Isa, another JCP member, however, was out of the country then.

When the JCP was meeting on Sept 9, the lawyers had also organised a protest and convention in a nearby SC Bar Association complex, in which they had accused the judiciary of favouritism due to its pick and choose practice in the appointments and thus harming the judiciary’s image.

In a resolution so adopted, the convention had asked the JCP to strictly adhere to the seniority principle in the judicial appointments to the apex court from the provincial high courts until such time as fair, transparent and objective criteria for appointment of judges at all levels were framed in consultation with all stakeholders including the Bar and the appropriate amendments to the Judicial Commission rules.

Source: Dawn


Two Teenage Girl Victims Of Honour Killings Found In South-Eastern Iran


Two teenage girls were found dead in Sistan and Baluchestan Province,


December 29, 2021

Two teenage girls were found dead in Sistan and Baluchestan Province, south-eastern Iran. They were both victims of honour killings.

The two teenage girls were shot to death by their family members in Torkani village of Dashtiari County in Sistan and Baluchestan.

Video footage circulated in social media this week shows locals finding the dead bodies of the two teenage girls in a deserted road.

Reliable sources say the murders happened nearly two months ago. The two victims of honor killings identified as B.T. and Y.T. were 17 and 18.

Hamshahrionline cited Colonel Ebrahim Kouchakzaii, the State Security Force commander in Chabahar, verifying the murders of the two young women by their family near Torkani village.

He said the reason for the murder of the two teenage girls was “anger over their escape from home for several days.” Two of their relatives killed them on the way before reaching home. The killers are presently in detention.

The two victims of honor killings called home several days after they escaped. They had decided to return home and expressed remorse. The family welcomed them, but the girls encountered several angry relatives who shot them to death before reaching home.

The Hamshahrionline report published on December 25, 2021, said the two victims of honor killings had been killed 50 days before.

Hundreds of victims of honor killings per year

In a report published in 2019, the state-run Sharq daily newspaper wrote that an annual average of 375 to 450 honor killings are recorded in Iran. The murders are more prevalent in Khuzestan, Kurdistan, Ilam, and Sistan and Baluchestan provinces.

The Iranian regime’s laws are not decisive in punishing the murderer. Usually, because the law considers the father the owner of his child’s blood, he does not receive a proportionate punishment for murdering his daughter. This is a license to kill, as evident in the murder of Romina Ashrafi by her father in May 2020.

The police and judicial authorities also act negligently. The law enforcement officers stop at the door. Under the clerical regime’s laws, they are not allowed to enter anyone’s house when a case of domestic violence against women is reported.

The catastrophic rise in honor killings in Iran is rooted in the patriarchal culture institutionalized in the laws and society. Although the father, brother, or husband holds the knife, sickle, or rifle, the murders are rooted in the medieval outlook of the ruling regime. The clerical regime’s laws officially denote that women are second-degree citizens owned by men.

The clerical regime’s failure to criminalize these murders has led to a disastrous surge in honor killings.

Some women’s rights activists believe that honor killings in Iran are officially justified as “family differences.”

Rezvan Moghaddam, who has documented honor killings in Iran over the past decade, questions this justification. She says, “This is just an effort to conceal the truth. For example, what could be the family difference between a father and his 13-year-old daughter or between a brother and his elder sister? There are other reasons behind these differences.

“In other cases, families regard divorce as a disgrace. To protect the family’s dignity, male relatives murder a woman who asks for a divorce. Again, this is explained under the title of ‘family differences.’

“Their fiancées kill some women for saying no to their proposals. These murders take place because the man believes he owns the body of his fiancé. He views her negative answer as an insult to himself. I believe honor killings are rooted in the sense of ‘owning a woman’s body and life, and any murder rooted in this sense of ownership is considered an honor killing.”

Source: NRC Iran


First wife alone can challenge husband’s second marriage: LHC

Wajih Ahmad Sheikh

December 30, 2021

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court has ruled that only the first wife can challenge the second marriage of her husband if contracted without her permission.

Justice Muhammad Amjad Rafiq issued the ruling quashing a first information report (FIR) against a man registered on an application by his brother-in-law for contracting a second marriage allegedly without the mandatory permission from his first wife.

The Sheikhupura police had registered the impugned FIR in 2013 against Ghazanfar Naveed, the petitioner seeking quashment, on the complaint of the brother of his first wife. Earlier, another FIR was registered in 2011 against him on a similar charge by the same complainant, which was cancelled by a judicial magistrate.

The complainant then lodged the impugned FIR based on the same plea, though with a twist that Naveed contracted a second marriage by preparing a forged permission letter purportedly issued by his first wife. The matter had been pending before a magistrate for trial since 2013.

Complainant claims his brother-in-law contracted a second marriage on a forged permission letter

The counsel for the petitioner mainly argued that under the dicta laid down by the Supreme Court in the famous case of ‘Ms. Sughran Bibi v. The State’ (PLD 2018 SC 595), no second FIR was permissible on the same facts and there was no difference between the two FIRs against the petitioner.

He said the matter was between the spouses and touched the terms and conditions of a marriage certificate/nikahnama and in such an eventuality the ordinary court loses jurisdiction in view of special provisions contained in the Family Courts Act, 1964.

On the other hand, the counsel for the complainant argued that this was not a matter to be tried by a family court because the alleged forgery committed by the petitioner did not fall within the purview of a family dispute.

Justice Rafiq, in his verdict, observed that it is trite that a second FIR is not permissible under the law and that every version in an FIR put forward by the same complainant or different parties to the proceedings would be recorded in the same FIR and if the first stood cancelled, the party concerned may file a private complaint or an application for review of the cancellation order.

In the present case, since the complainant has not done this, there was no occasion for him to get another FIR lodged, the judge added. The judge noted that whether the permission letter was forged or genuine is an issue to be decided by the family court. He further observed that so far, the first wife had not challenged the second marriage of her husband/petitioner, who is the aggrieved party, in terms of filing a complaint under Section 6(5) of The Muslim Family Laws Ordinance, 1961. The judge maintained that the complainant, being a brother of the first wife, cannot be termed an aggrieved party nor can he be authorised to file such a complaint.

“When the first wife, being sine qua non for initiating the proceedings, an alternative illegal course, that too through a person not aggrieved at all, is nothing but farce,” Justice Rafiq ruled.

He declared that the magistrate was not justified in taking cognisance of the case, which was exclusively triable by a family court. Allowing the petition, the judge declared that the impugned FIR was not competent under the law and quashed the same.

However, he observed that the wife may agitate before the family court by filing a complaint with the grievance on the touchstone of her husband contracting a second marriage without her permission.

Source: Dawn


Missouri Shooting Range In Suburban Kansas City Made Muslim Woman Remove Hijab

29 December, 2021

A firearms store and gun range in suburban Kansas City refused to let a Muslim woman use the range unless she removed her hijab, a Muslim civil rights organisation alleged in a federal lawsuit.

In a lawsuit filed Tuesday, the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the law firm of Baldwin & Vernon in Independence alleges that the gun range at Frontier Justice in Lee's Summit enforces its dress code in a discriminatory way that disproportionately affects Muslim women.

A message left with store officials Wednesday was not immediately returned.

Rania Barakat and her husband went to Frontier Justice on January 1 to shoot at the gun range. According to the lawsuit, Barakat was told she would not be allowed to use the range unless she removed her hijab, a religious head covering typically worn by Muslim women.

The gun range requires shooters to remove all head coverings except baseball caps facing forward. A store manager explained that shrapnel could cause the hijab and skin to burn.

The couple told the manager they had used several other shooting ranges with no problems caused by the hijab, and that people wear long sleeves and shirts that cover their necks to protect them from shrapnel, according to the lawsuit.

The manager said the gun range had different rules, according to the lawsuit. The couple left the store after the manager became "aggressive and loud," the suit alleged.

The lawsuit contends that it is Frontier Justice's policy to turn away Muslims wearing hijabs, citing several social media posts from other Muslims about being refused use of the shooting range. It also claims that Instagram posts from Frontier Justice show customers wearing baseball caps turned backward, and hats and scarves.

"It is completely unacceptable for a business establishment to deny service to customers based on their religious beliefs — and that is exactly what Frontier Justice has done," Moussa Elbayoumy, chairman of the board of CAIR-Kansas, said in a statement. "The claim that a hijab somehow presents a safety issue is merely a bad excuse in an attempt to justify a pattern of discriminatory treatment of Muslim women."

CAIR had asked the U.S. Department of Justice in July to investigate civil rights practices at Frontier Justice.

At the time, Bren Brown, Frontier Justice’s president, said Barakat was not discriminated against and was asked to follow a dress code that is applied to all patrons equally, The Kansas City Star reported.

The lawsuit asks the federal court to find that Frontier Justice's policies regarding the wearing of hijabs violates the 1964 Civil Rights Act and prohibit the gun range and its employees from acting in ways that discriminate against anyone based on their religion.

Source: The New Arab


Muslim and Jewish EMT volunteers join forces, resuscitate Ein Nakuba woman

DECEMBER 29, 2021

A 50-year-old woman collapsed and was lying unresponsive in her front yard on Monday night in the Arab village, Ein Nakuba, west of Jerusalem.

Jewish and Muslim United Hatzalah EMT volunteers worked together to resuscitate the woman.

Muslim EMT volunteer Samr Salama was the first responder on the scene who arrived as soon as he got notified of the incident and connected his defibrillator to the woman and performed chest compressions. The woman did not have a pulse at this time.

Soon more EMTs arrived including, Dovi Bash, a Jewish volunteer who was at synagogue at the time of the incident and came as fast as he could to help.

The woman's heart rate was undetected by a defibrillator for around ten minutes while volunteers performed compressions and ventilated a bag valve mask (BVM).

Once the intense care ambulance arrived and the patient had been administered medications and fluid via an IV, the heart monitor showed the patient's pulse had "returned to a steady rhythm of 140 bpm". The woman was taken to the hospital for further care and recovery.

Bash pointed out the extraordinary teamwork of everyone at the scene. “In general, I am always pleased that the United Hatzalah volunteers, and the patients that we treat, come from all different races and religions and that we work together as a team with no discrimination. It always feels good to go home for the night after saving a life.”

Speaking about the experience, Salma said: "This was one of the hardest resuscitations I've been a part of, but I'm just happy that the resuscitation went smoothly and that the woman is okay and I thank my fellow responders for joining me in saving the woman’s life.”

"The team was relieved and excited that they had just witnessed a miracle" after some members were losing hope that they could successfully resuscitate her, according to the press release.

This past July Jewish and Muslim EMTs similarly came together to save a woman's life in Pisgat Zeev in Jerusalem. One of the volunteers on the scene said, "I help everyone in need regardless of who they are."

In October, United Hatzalah held a mass casualty incident training exercise for its women's unit which has 150 Jewish and Muslim volunteers who serve their religious communities throughout Israel where an extra level of sensitivity is requested.

These efforts have brought together Jewish and Muslim volunteers to save lives despite race and religion.

Source: Jerusalem Post


Arab Women's Society of Guelph celebrates outstanding women

Guelph Mercury

December 29, 2021

On Saturday, Dec. 25, the Arab Women's Society of Guelph (AWSOG) organized an event for Arab women from different nationalities to discuss some topics related to Arab women at the end of 2021. The event was held at the Paghman Kobob restaurant in Guelph.

The event complied with the new restrictions from public health and Canadian government on the COVID-19 pandemic. The attendance rate was 50 per cent of the capacity of the restaurant while ensuring that there was complete proof of vaccination by the attendees. The event included a valuable lecture from Yasmin Haloubi, who works for Immigrant Services. She presented free educational courses for teaching English, computer courses, cooking and sports lessons, which start in January 2022.

In addition, the AWSOG, headed by Dr. Sundes and Dr. Nahla, circulated all the new guidelines of the Ministry of Health and the Canadian government regarding COVID-19 to all the women present at the event, including a number of newcomers and refugees.

Furthermore, AWSOG celebrated the graduation and success of a number of new graduate students from the University of Guelph and post-secondary schools, as well as Arab Christian women for their Christmas celebration. At the end of the party, there were raffles for gifts provided by the AWSOG.

It was a warm, joyful and co-operative evening.

Source: Guelphmercury


Players hail the success of first Saudi women’s Regional Football League

December 29, 2021

RIYADH: The final whistle has blown in the group stage of the Regional Football League, the first official league competition for female soccer players in Saudi Arabia, with Al-Yamamah, Jeddah Eagles and Eastern Flames crowned champions of the central, western and eastern divisions, respectively.

In addition to the pride and joy they felt while competing in a league of their own, the players said it gave them the chance to develop their technical skills and improve their physical fitness, in anticipation of a chance to represent their country in a Saudi national women’s team in the future.

Sama Al-Sabiani of western division side White Lion said she really enjoyed playing in the first women’s league in the Kingdom, and that it had helped improve the organization of the team and resulted in remarkable improvements in the performance of the players as it gave them the opportunity to play against strong opponents,

“As players, we gained endurance and played with a higher fighting spirit than ever before; we gave it our all,” she said.

“Not only did we give a great performance, we really enjoyed ourselves.”

The 16-team league provided strong motivation for the players to develop and improve their skills, Al-Sabiani said, and White Lion trained really hard for it, although ultimately they finished outside the top three in their division who now proceed, with the top three in the central division and the top two from the eastern division, to the national championship, which begins at King Abdullah Sports City on New Year’s Day.

“As players, we fought and won several games, and we aspired to more victories to qualify for other leagues in the future,” Al-Sabiani added.

Rana Abdullah Saeed, a midfielder for The Storm, who finished second in the western division, said: “I had a great experience and I am very happy that the Saudi Arabian Football Federation has taken this step. I am sure the SAFF will organize more leagues in the future and will continue to support women's football in particular, and sports in general.”

She added that the new league has had a very positive effect on her game.

“I was able to improve my technical skills and this experience has given me the motivation to develop my performance both on and off the field, making sure I eat right and educate myself more by reading sports books and watching videos on YouTube,” she said.

“This league, in particular, has helped me discover my strengths and weaknesses and I aspire to represent the Saudi national team thanks to my recent experience.”

White Lion player Houriya Al-Shamrani also said that the experience of playing in the Regional Football League had helped her to improve her skills and gain experience, and also helped the players to develop a competitive team spirit. She added that she benefited from playing under pressure and on natural grass.

“I was able to maintain my fitness level and meet many talented players,” Al-Shamrani said. “I also had the opportunity to speak with the undersecretary for planning and development at the Ministry of Sports, Adwa Al-Arifi, and listen to her advice. I will never forget her support when I was injured.

“I aspire to be the best player in the league and represent the Saudi national team and I want to be the first Saudi player to participate in the English Premier League.

“I would like to thank Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the SAFF for giving us this opportunity and I am sure the best is yet to come.”

Source: Arab News


Saudi justice minister visits all-female personal status court in Damman

December 29, 2021

DAMMAM: The Saudi justice minister on Wednesday inspected a personal status court in Dammam that will operate with an all-female staff.

The visit to the Eastern Province court by Walid bin Mohammed Al-Samaani, who is also president of the Supreme Judicial Council, was linked to efforts to give women more power within judicial chambers and related sectors.

His trip also marked the beginning of the implementation of a unified model standard for the Kingdom’s courts — the first two aspects covering appeals and personal status — that will later be rolled out to all judicial sectors.

The project aims to improve the working environment within courts and implement modern operational methods to reflect the continuous development of the justice sector, accelerate the judicial process and provide a better service to the public. It is in line with the National Transformation Program and Vision 2030.

The women who will run the Dammam court were given specialist training in all aspects of managing judicial and administrative departments.

Source: Arab News



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