‘Education key to empower women’

KATHMANDU: Speakers at an interaction on Saturday said education should be instrumental to empower women in our society.

Speaking at an interaction on women empowerment organised by Islamic Women Welfare Organisation here today, Constituent Assembly member Mohemmadin Siddaqui said she would raise issues to be incorporated in the new constitution in the CA. “I will raise issues of discrimination against women and their rights and empowerment. Women should fight for their rights,” she said.

Human rights activist Sakina Khatun said the condition of women in the country was very pitiable. “Because of the lack of education, many of them can’t participate in social activities like the men. To some extent, women are also responsible for this,” she added. Khatun also said the government should guarantee women’s rights for their empowerment.

“Many Muslim women are uneducated. Most of the Muslim girls are married before they are 13. They are not allowed to study,” she added.

Speaking at the same function, advocate Dinesh Tripathi said the constitution must guarantee the rights of the citizens. “There should be special privileges for the women from under-privileged communities for their empowerment,” he said, adding, “Only 35 per cent Nepali women are literate. The literacy rate of Muslim women is much below that.”

Yasiba Rahaman, president of the Islamic Women Welfare Organisation, said the literacy rate of Muslim women was below even that of the Dalit women. “Though law prohibits any form of discrimination against women, we are still discriminated against in the society,” she said, adding, “The reservation quota must be allocated for us too.”

According to the census of 2001, the population of Muslims in the country is about one million.