Women rights campaigner Salman Sufi received the prestigious Mother Teresa Award 2018 in Mumbai for his work to the empower women of Pakistan during the last four years.
Sufi is an international public policy and gender reform specialist. He paid tribute to Mother Teresa and the countless women who face abuse but are unable to seek justice in his acceptance speech.
He stressed that both Pakistan and India should compete with each other to eradicate violence against women. He dedicated his award to the countless survivors of violence who deserve support.
Honored to accept the #MotherTeresaAwards today in #Mumbai– Dedicate this award to countless survivors of violence who deserve our support. Let’s wage a war on Violence against Women together- #Pakistan #India #Bangladesh #SriLanka #Saarc pic.twitter.com/9m6eiGp7yL
— Salman Sufi (@SalmanSufi7) October 21, 2018
He also thanked former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif for his support.
The projects I initiated to help empower Women of Pakistan were not possible without the political support provided by @CMShehbaz and civil society that stood by us. The fight for equality is far from over. Let’s keep the momentum going. pic.twitter.com/cfHv2SHFAJ
— Salman Sufi (@SalmanSufi7) October 7, 2018
He led various pro-women reform initiatives in Punjab during the PML-N’s tenure.
Sufi co-authored the Punjab Protection of Women Against Violence Act, 2016. For female survivors of violence, he conceptualised South Asia’s first one-stop help centre (Violence Against Women Centre).
His work includes launching Women on Wheels, the country’s first campaign on women mobility. Women across Punjab were provided training to ride motorcycles.
He is also accredited with contributing to the field of education by adding chapters on women’s rights in Punjab textbooks.
He plans to expand his projects to other SAARC countries as well.
The award was conferred upon him by the Harmony Foundation and Missions of Charity. Malala Yousufzai and Ansar Burney are former Pakistani recipients of this prestigious award.