LAHORE, PAKISTAN, Oct 11: The advent of electronic media has boosted the visibility of women journalists as never before, though women still face an uphill struggle in their battle to achieve workplace equality.
These views were expressed by veteran journalist Beena Sarwar speaking at the conclusion of the first National Conference of South Asian Women in the Media (SAWM) here on Saturday.
Sexual harassment and an increasing conservative atmosphere that stipulates an ever-stricter
dress code for female journalists were among the concerns.
On the second day of the conference, Asma Sherazi, Saima Mohsin, Mona Rana, Faakhra Tehreem, Beena Sarwar and Rubina Jamil discussed these challenges in detail, and resolved to make the SAWM’s complaint cell more active as a tool of advocacy for women in the media.
Participants noted that expectations were now greater than ever from the democratic government to safeguard rights of women in the media in the country.
“The women’s movement in Pakistan has always been related to the democratic process,” noted Beena Sarwar.
The conference concluded with an awards session in which women pioneers from various fields such as sports, education, and media were recognized for their achievements at both national and international level.
The awardees included Kanwal Naseer, Sultana Siddiqui, Frieha Altaf, Ameena Saiyid, Nahid Siddiqui, Rehana Hakim, Kiran Khan, Shabana Akhtar, Sajida Mir, Asma Jahangir, Muniza Hashmi, Afzal Tauseef and Dr Arifa Syeda.
Chairman (Rays of Development Organization, Sargodha, Pakistan)