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BREAKING THE CYCLE – Access to Justice


Khurshid Mai, aged 26, married a man of her parents’ choice. At the time, she did not know that
her husband was a habitual drug user with no steady job. From the very beginning of their
marriage, he would beat Khurshid for one reason or another. One day, the beating took a
different turn. Her husband threw her out of the house into the street, and asked her to never
Stunned and angry, she returned to her parents’ house. When his rage had subsided, her
husband came to her and asked for forgiveness. They talked for a while but soon she realized
that nothing would be different if she went back; it would be a return to the same vicious cycle
of violence. She said no, which made him angry and he left after intimidating her family and
threatening to kill her.
She felt insecure even in her own house, because she was aware that her husband’s words were
not empty threats. Under severe mental stress she decided to visit the local police station who
informed her there were not enough grounds for registering a case, and advised her to
compromise with her husband instead. She went to the police station several times as she
began fearing for her safety; but instead of assistance, she faced a culture of harassment and
Then one day she saw a poster for DLAC-Muzaffargarh as she was
returning from the police station. She met with the DLAC team, who
comforted her and she told them about her situation. After listening
to her story, the panel lawyer filed a petition under Sections 22-A and
22-B under the Code of Criminal Procedure in the District Court to get
5 6 Soon afterwards, Khurshid Mai obtained khula and after completion of her iddat period,
remarried a man from the adjoining Union Council with whom she is living a contented and
peaceful life.
In Islamic law refers to divorce initiated by the wife.
Refers to time period a woman must observe in Islam after a death of a spouse or divorce before she
“I am happy with my
new life. He [second
husband] treats me
well and provides for
her the legal help she needed. The case was decided in her favor and the police were directed
not to subject the petitioner to harassment of any kind. As a result, Khurshid’s husband was
summoned to the police station and was warned not to harass her in any way. He has
subsequently disappeared from her life.

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