Thousands of women and people from all walks of life marked the International Women’s Day on Tuesday by rallying across the country to demand equality and freedom for women. Aurat March, an annual event has been going strong since 2018 parallel with the Pakistani #MeToo movement on International Women’s Day.
Each chapter of the Aurat March has its own manifesto. This year, the Karachi chapter called for the provision of a living wage based on access to quality education, affordable healthcare, security and peace; while Lahore chapter focused on reimagining justice in the society. Multan, meanwhile, called for the restructuring of education system and Islamabad rallied on justice, security and freedom.
Aurat March 2022 also centered around many social issues encompassing the current flawed system for women, trans, khawajasira, non-binary or working class folks in all spheres of life and demanded for a concrete structural change of our justice system. Additionally, another demand put forward was of the strengthening of welfare services available to survivors of violence and impacted communities.
Many installations this year also named and shamed “Youtube journalists” for spreading misinformation. An installation titled “Journalism must be ethical” was set up to call out certain journalists who have been spreading misinformation and misleading public under the garb of responsible journalism. These journalists are not given permission to enter the event, yet still show up to harass and criticize the participants present at the March. One such installation consisted of pictures of youtube journalists and the degrading comments they had passed on attendants of Aurat March.