Ninety per cent women family members of ‘missing persons’ suffer from mental disorders

A recent study reveals that almost ninety per cent women belonging to the families of ‘missing persons’ in Pakistan suffer from acute depression, anxiety, hysteria and other psychological disorders.
The research titled 'Grief Untold' was launched at Institute of Policy Studies on Friday, December 2, 2016. The study has been conducted by an Islamabad-based rights group: Defence of Human Rights (DHR). It looks at length into the plights of 100 women family members of missing persons in Pakistan.
This research presents an insight into the problems (socio-economic, medical, and emotional) suffered by the women who are closely related to the disappeared citizens of Pakistan, most of whom belong to Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. A hundred families were visited in these two provinces by the Defence of Human Rights team, and detailed interviews of female family members were conducted.
Conversations with affected families reveal that an overwhelmingly large percentage (nearly ninety percent) of women with disappeared family members are living in conditions of economic deprivation, and extreme emotional hardship. Many of these women suffer from anxiety, depression, stress, high blood pressure, diabetes, hysteria and other psychological disorders.
These ruined households, it seems, have been completely forgotten by the government; no steps have ever been taken to rehabilitate them in any way, said Amna Masood Janjua, Chairperson DHR introducing her organization’s study at the event.
Other speakers of the session included Justice (Retd) Javed Iqbal, head of the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances (CoIoED), Asad Umar, PTI leader and MNA, DG-IPS Khalid Rahman, M. Akram Zaki, former secretary general foreign affairs, Barrister Shahzad Akbar and Dr. Asma Humayun, psychologist. Jean-François Cautain, Ambassador of European Union to Pakistan was also present on the occasion.

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