Pakistani media mocks clerics who say men can ‘lightly beat’ wives

By Agence France-Presse

Pakistani media and activists poured scorn Friday on a suggestion from an Islamic religious body that men should be allowed to “lightly beat” their wives, made in their draft of a women’s protection bill.

The Council of Islamic Ideology released a draft of the bill on Thursday, their response to progressive legislation giving women greater rights and protection in the province of Punjab.

Local media quoted the draft as saying: “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.”

The proposal was met with a wave of mockery in the media and online Friday.

The country’s biggest and most influential newspaper, the English-language daily Dawn, published a satirical article with a list of things people could beat other than their wives — including eggs, the bottom of ketchup bottles, and the Michael Jackson hit Beat It.

The article was a rare example of the media mocking those claiming to speak in the name of religion in conservative Muslim Pakistan.

The draft was also slammed by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, which condemned its recommendations as “ridiculous” and called for the council of “zealots” to be disbanded.

“It is difficult to comprehend why anyone in his right mind would think that any further encouragement or justification is needed to invite violence upon women in Pakistan,” the HRCP stated.


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11 COMMENTS

  1. men should be allowed to “lightly beat” their wives,

    Oh, so just lightly then. That’s a relief.

    Interesting that the beating that is recommended for wives in the Koran doesn’t say anything about “lightly” beating. Just “beat” that’s it.

  2. The Council of Islamic Ideology

    What a refreshing change! A pernicious ideology calling itself an ideology. One of the hallmarks of an ideology ( look up the definition ) is to bandy the word theory around in the vulgar sense, the sense having no empirical support.

  3. Religion is shameless in its casuistry. Islam is the worst. I remember sitting thru a lecture – disguised as conversation – by a pious leader at a Mosque near Minneapolis in which he righteously intoned that the wife- beating encouraged by the Quran was “symbolic.” My confirmation students and I were too polite to ask “symbolic of what?”

  4. @OP – Local media quoted the draft as saying: “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.”

    I am wondering how that works on camel caravans crossing deserts? – Or does it just recognise that faith-thinking requires no factual input?

  5. @OP – a suggestion from an Islamic religious body that men should be allowed to “lightly beat” their wives,

    Apparently some also think its fine to abuse those who they would like to have as their (second) wives!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-36425946

    A Pakistani woman who was set on fire for refusing a marriage proposal has died of her injuries.

    Maria Sadaqat, a young schoolteacher, was attacked in her home by a group of men on Sunday and died in hospital in Islamabad on Wednesday.

    Her family say she had turned down a marriage proposal from the son of the owner of a school she had taught at.

    Campaigners say attacks against women who refuse marriage proposals are common in Pakistan.

    Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif launched an immediate investigation into the killing, which will report in two days.

    Maria’s father has said the school owner was one of the men who attacked his daughter. Police told the BBC that the men beat her and doused her in petrol before setting her alight near the hill resort of Murree, not far from the capital.

    She suffered serious burns on nearly all of her body. Local media report that she had 85% burns.

    Ms Sadaqat’s maternal aunt, Aasia, told the BBC the trouble started when the school’s owner asked for her niece to marry his son.

    She said: “She was teaching at their school. They sent in the proposal six months ago but the guy was already married and had a daughter. They wanted her to run the school after marrying the son of the owner of the school.

    Her father refused the proposal and they took the revenge by doing this.

    . . .. . . and these people are running schools!!!!!

    In February, Punjab province, where the attack on Miss Sadaqat happened, passed a landmark law criminalising all forms of violence against women.

    However, more than 30 religious groups, including all the mainstream Islamic political parties, threatened to launch protests if the law was not repealed.

    It’s that “religion of peace again”!!!

  6. Stafford Gordon #6

    Does the Qur’an say anything about bondage?

    I don’t remember anything specifically about sexual bondage but the Quran does give a husband the right to beat his wife not only for behavior that he doesn’t like, no, all he has to do is suspect that she has bad intentions!

    An-Nisa 4:34

    Men are in charge of women by [right of] what Allah has given one over the other and what they spend [for maintenance] from their wealth. So righteous women are devoutly obedient, guarding in [the husband’s] absence what Allah would have them guard. But those [wives] from whom you fear arrogance – [first] advise them; [then if they persist], forsake them in bed; and [finally], strike them. But if they obey you [once more], seek no means against them. Indeed, Allah is ever Exalted and Grand.

    S. II verse 223

    Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will

    Encouragement to marry “captives” -slaves:

    S. IV verse 3

    Marry women of your choice, two, three, or four; But if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with them, then only one, or a captive that your right hands possess.

    S. IV verse 15

    If any of your women are guilty of lewdness , take the evidence of four witnesses from amongst you against them; and if they testify, confine them to houses until death do claim them.

    Bondage in a general sense is what the Quran orders for all women all of the time. It’s a lifetime of sexual slavery. These women are legally owned and controlled. Marital rape is perfectly legal in this system. It’s is a far cry from consensual sexual behavior that we call bondage here in the West.

  7. Indeed, Allah is ever Exalted and Grand.

    Maybe so, but he sure ain’t the type of bloke I’d enjoy having a few pints with. Maybe the media extracting the urine from the Islamic clergy, is the beginning of a chink in the religion’s violently enforced immunity from criticism. Nothing works like taking the mickey!

  8. Laurie

    Bondage in a general sense is what the Quran orders for all women all of the time.

    And the Burka is no more nor less than sex fetish bondage gear. I won’t ban them because masochism is truly a thing and adults can spend their lives enslaved to another if they wish, BUT, I would like any defender of this mode of living to understand how distressing it is to have to explain to your young kids about about such abjection and humiliation, about masochism, about paternalism that morphs seemlessly into sadism. So much more depressing, for being a life lost to it, than the rubber and leather game play we saw in the gay parade.

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