LAHORE - Over 2,300 women have approached courts in past two months for dissolution of marriage mainly because of poor financial conditions, it is learnt.
The official data issued by the district judiciary said that more than 11,000 cases related to family issues were pending in the courts, most of which were of divorce and dissolution of marriages, which means that the average disposal of cases has reached at 336.67 per day.
Amir, a clerk who works at the marking branch of family courts, told The Nation that around 150 divorce cases are filed daily by women.
During the last month of January, he said the elections of district judiciary were to be held that disturbed the institutions of cases to some extent but despite that more than 2300 women intended to courts for dissolution of marriage.
About 75 percent of applications are moved for dissolution of marriage while other 25 percent are filed related to maintenance charges, said the sources.
“During the month of January, I received 1364 applications out of total 2300, seeking dissolution of marriages,” said Amir.
According to the official data, from February 2005 to January 2008 about 75, 000 divorce cases were registered and February 2008 to May 2011, 1, 24141 divorce cases were registered. Around 2, 59, 064 separations have taken place in the provincial metropolis over the last decade.
In 2010, 40,410 separation cases were registered in the city’s family courts and 13,500” divorces have been filed in 2011.
With an extraordinary tendency among women, the digit now has become double as only within the last 50 days, 2300 applications were submitted in courts, most of them were related to separation.
Samina, a resident of Shahdara Town, told this scribe that she married Mushtaq five years ago. The wedlock resulted in a baby- but her husband was an addict and used to beat her, she said. Samina said he did not give her a single penny to buy even a one time meal for the last two years. She said finally she decided to file a suit for dissolution of marriage.
Noreen, another woman told this scribe through her counsel, that she married Aslam one year ago but a couple of months her husband refused to give maintenance charges. In addition, he used to beat her whenever she demanded money adding that he was interested in other women.
According to legal experts, forced marriages, lust, infidelity, joint family system, misunderstandings, lack of trust, financial pressures and increasing unemployment were the major factor behind deteriorating family fabrics.
Mian Majid Hussain, a political activist and former two times Nazim of UC-70 of PP 139, says union councils always have played an effective role for strengthening families and preventing divorces in the society.
He says the Nazims were chosen by people and had very close relations with them which empowered them to resolve all social issues particularly the family issues.
“But suspension of local bodies they failed to resolve family issues, people don’t rely upon official administrators, because they no have such status as elected ones have,” said Mian Majid Hussain.
Solicitor, Mustafa Chaudhary, who is an expert in family laws, said non-government organisations (NGOs) and the electronic media have also weakened the social fabric. “NGOs are not fully aware of our societal fabric; they only raise slogans of freedom,” he said.
“Media are exploiting women; women have become a product you can buy or sell easily,” he said. Mustafa said 85 percent of love marriages end up in separations. Even couple having children do not hesitate to take divorce; resultantly children’s lives are ruined”, he added.
He said after amendments to the family laws it has now become easier to take divorce. He said judges who hear divorce cases, sometimes, announce verdict in the first hearing.
Another lawyer Chaudhary Shoaib said in the past the word ‘divorce’ was a taboo in Pakistani society, but now people do not feel ashamed of getting divorce. However, he said, financial issue was the major reason behind increasing ratio of divorce.
He said women come to file their cases along with their parents, which show that parents supported their daughters in getting divorce. He said women were acquiring higher education and contributing to every sector of society and they were not a burden anymore.
“Working women who are financially strong are less willing to save their marriages and can quickly opt for divorce. When a woman is financially strong, she doesn’t feel the need to compromise,” he said. He said divorce was increasing mostly among couples between ages 22 and 30.
He said this situation becomes worse when both sides refuse to compromise. “Intolerance and unwillingness to compromise was playing a vital role in increasing number of divorces, he added.