It is a matter of rejoice and fulfilment that women in Pakistan have over the years evolved much through awareness and enlightenment, emancipation and empowerment. Pakistan has the privilege of having women of substance who have broken stereotypes, exceeded the glass ceiling and shattered the norms and myths of being feeble. Islam preaches about women rights; it clearly defines the higher status of women in every role she has to play. Quran raised the voice against burying females at birth and accorded all kinds of respect, which is a testimony of how progressive the real spirit of Islam is. Khadijatul Kubra (RA), the wife of the Prophet, was a successful businesswoman, which is a living example of how empowered women were. And marrying the lady of stature was a testimony of how the Prophet (PBUH) recognized a woman’s position in the family setup.
In Pakistan, the creation attributes the same legacy. It is a reminder of the struggle and sacrifices that were made during the Pakistan Movement by both men and women. It is not wrong to say that active participation of women of subcontinent had accelerated the Independence Movement. Who doesn’t know the role of Bi Amman, Fatima Jinnah, Ra’ana Liaquat, and many others?
Empowerment in its raw form doesn’t mean to give power to someone but to understand the factors which hamper women’s progress and gives them enough strength, support and to help them achieve what they deserve. Thanks to the institution of motherhood, and the willingness on part of their male partners; women have withstood difficulties and paved their way through challenging environments. Today’s woman is greatly contributing to actually revolutionizing and bringing positive fortune to the society. Now she is in every field; she is a banker, a soldier, an artist, an astronaut etc. We have women excelling and outshining in the defence forces, law enforcement & intelligence agencies, government and semi-government organizations, private and industrial sectors, IT and communication, media and transport and more importantly, at home.
Hilal for Her is a tribute to this fact of life. Pakistan Armed Forces are providing women full representation and opportunity of a career. We believe in encouraging them, promoting and protecting their sense of identity and conviction, galvanizing their talent and potential through education and knowledge. Hilal for Her is just one part of the role the Armed Forces are playing in contributing to the cause. We are confident that this will inspire and educate our womenfolk, who can play an effective and vibrant role towards bringing a progressive change in the society. In our efforts, Quaid’s vision provides guiding inspiration: “There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a great competition and rivalry between the two. There is a third power stronger than both, that of the women.”
With the first issue of ‘Hilal for Her’ in your hands, we have started this journey and it is you who would decide how far we have been successful. Your feedback will help us improve our effort in the coming editions.
Major General Asif Ghafoor
Director General Inter Services Public Relations