On Saturday the President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi circulated an ordinance regarding the protection of parents, giving them safety against forced eviction from their houses.
The Parental Protection Ordinance 2021 is passed Under the Article 89 of the constitution by the president of Pakistan which makes commission of such acts accountable to punishment.
The penalty for breaking this law includes one-year jail term or fine, or both, to those who are found to be guilty.
As per the ordinance, parents would have the security of living in their houses even if it’s their sibling’s house or they have rented them out. In any of the cases if the ownership rights devolve with parents, they could ask their children to evacuate the house.
Right after the notice is received, the children would be expected to clear out the house. In case of failure of leaving the house on time, they would have to suffer 30-day imprisonment or pay fine or face both punishments. If the orders are not followed then the district deputy commissioners would have the authority in the light of the law to proceed and police would be allowed to arrests without warrants in such cases while both parents and their children have been given the right to file an appeal or claim.
The former secretary of Ministry of Human Rights Rabiya Javeri Agha stated that the ordinance would give security to the parents or grandparents from being evicted from their houses by their children or grandchildren’s.
She further explained that, “The issue is vulnerability of elderly parents and here the law is trying to protect the most vulnerable i.e. the elderly people. The ministry is quite aware of the data on abuse of elders in Pakistan and legal safety measure will protect them from becoming homeless and provide them the legal support to evict abusive children living with them through institutional process.”
As per the data, 25.5% of parents in Islamabad has gone through physical attack which is quite an alarming figure enlightening that above fourth of the parents in Islamabad are being abused by their own children.
Mistreatment cases as per provinces
14.7pc of parents have experienced oppressive behavior from their own children. While 21.8pc elderly men in the province have experienced maltreatment, about 6pc elderly women have also been subjected to disrespect.
8.2pc of parents being mistreated by their children
6.1pc of parents faces assault and mistreatment.
“Don’t forget that we have 14 million people over the age of 60 years so even though in proportion to our population they are few, it still makes us one of the 15 countries in the world with an old age population of over 60. The forecasts are that we will have 44m elderly persons by 2050,” the former secretary said.
She later justify that the subject of parental protection is sensitive and subtle, requiring social science research-based expert input and in-depth debate in the parliamentary committees. “For instance, would such a draconian law increase the risk of physical violence by senior citizens’ siblings or offspring, even resulting in their death?” Ms Abdullah asked.