Pakistan’s Council of Islamic Ideology has ruled that “light beating” of wives is allowed in Pakistan if the woman decides to wear a dress of her choice or refuses to have sexual intercourse or does not take a bath after intercourse.
The powerful council, commonly known as CII, is made up of Islamic scholars and clerics who directly advice Pakistani lawmakers and it has been outspoken in its opposition to giving protection to women.
The Council, also in a regressive statement, passed an opinion that it would be “un-Islamic” for Muslim wives to leave their abusive husbands and seek refuge in a women’s shelter, if they are beaten at home.
Farzana Bari, a human rights activist based in Islamabad, believes that the suggestion that it’s okay for Pakistani wives to be lightly beaten by their husbands should be enough to convince citizens in the nation to demand the permanent disbanding of the CII.
“It shows the decadent mindset of some elements who are part of the council. The proposed bill has nothing to do with Islam and it would just bring a bad name to this country,” she said
The CII made its anti-women stand clear after the bill protecting women from abusive husbands passed in Punjab province, asserting that it wanted to get involved before such legislation spread to other areas of Pakistan. The council has just completed its counter proposal to the Punjab legislation.
“A husband should be allowed to lightly beat his wife if she defies his commands and refuses to dress up as per his desires; turns down demand of intercourse without any religious excuse or does not take bath after intercourse or menstrual periods.” – Council Statement.
CII in Pakistan also wants to legalize domestic violence against wives who refuse to cover their head or face in public. The CII also wants a woman beaten (they don’t clarify “lightly” or otherwise) if they “interacts with strangers; speaks loud enough that [they] can easily be heard by strangers; and/or provides monetary support to people without taking consent of [their] spouse.” – CINEWS