Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Pakistani Provincial Assembly Criminalizes Tribal Marriage Custom

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In Pakistan, Moves To Ban A Tribal Marriage Custom

A Pakistani province is legislating to ban an ancient tribal custom that entitles a man to force his marriage proposal on a woman. The custom, called ghagh, can ruin a woman's life by limiting her marriage prospects or leading to long family feuds.
Pakistan's northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has passed a law criminalizing an ancient tribal marriage custom.

On January 8, the provincial assembly declared the Pashtun custom of "ghagh" punishable by up to seven years in prison or a fine of nearly $6,000.

Ghagh entitles a man to force his marriage proposal on a woman by making it public.

Rights activists denounce the custom as abusive, saying it deprives women of the prospect of a happy marriage.

Pakistan's 30 million Pashtuns live chiefly in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the adjacent tribal areas.

The custom is generally in decline, but activists say it still persists in southern districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in the tribal areas where years of insurgency have eroded social solidarity and government control.

Based on reporting by Dawn.com.pk and Tribune.com.pk

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