QUETTA: Two young sisters were doused with acid on Tuesday in Mastung District alarming the masses who see the acid attacks as an organised attempt to scare women indoors in Balochistan.
The victims were two adolescent sisters of 13 and 14 years of age identified as Mahawish and Sehrish. They had visited a shopping centre ahead of the occasion of Eid in Mastung District.
Four women were doused with acid earlier on Monday and were virtually defaced for visiting a shopping centre in Quetta. The Mastung attack comes in the wake of a series of attacks that are taking place against women to scare them away from schools or markets.
On their way back to Mujhaid colony, two masked men doused the teenage sisters with acid, which left Mahawish’s neck, and Sehrish’s face badly burned, said sources.
Both teenagers were shifted to a private hospital in Mastung and were later referred to Quetta for better treatment.
Women and children visit the shopping centres and markets to shop for Eid and persons find such occasions apt enough to victimise them with inhuman acts.
So far no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. The story of the Panjgur incident, where women were threatened not to visit schools, is still fresh in the minds of the people of the province. Earlier this year, US Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Catherine Russell has said her country is committed to work with Pakistan to eliminate violence against women.
Rights groups in Pakistan estimate that more than a hundred people, mainly women and girls, are disfigured in acid attacks every year, usually in cases of domestic violence. In 2013, around 80 women were attacked. Most incidents go unreported with women suffering silently at home rather than seeking help. Despite continuous efforts by NGOs to stop the crime and pressure the government for strict punishments to perpetrators, this form of violence against women is still rampant in the country.
In 2012, the Pakistani Senate unanimously passed two bills imposing strict punishments on people who attack women with acid. The passage of these bills was hailed as a historical achievement. But activists say the government does almost nothing to curb the violence. The main issue, they say, lies in the implementation of the laws.
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