On 16.11.2023 the Federal Ombudsperson Secretariat for Protection against Harassment (FOSPAH) held an awareness seminar at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). The event was organized by the Lahore Office of FOSPAH which is headed by Ms. Uzma Chughtai (retired District & Sessions Judge, Punjab). Ms. Fauzia Viqar, the Federal Ombudsperson, was the Chief Guest at the seminar which was also attended by the Vice-Chancellor of LUMS, Dr. Tariq Jadoon. The seminar included an official tour of the LUMS premises. 

Ms. Fauzia Viqar conducted an interactive session with a group of more than 50 students from across different schools of LUMS. In her session Ms. Viqar explained the importance of institutions such as FOSPAH which provide timely and cost-effective justice to victims of harassment, irrespective of gender. She informed the audience that along with adjudicating complaints of harassment FOSPAH also engages in advocacy by sensitizing persons about behaviours that constitute harassment and the remedies available to victims under the various laws of Pakistan. She apprised the audience that after the 2022 amendments to the Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Act, 2010 university students can now file complaints of harassment either before their university’s Inquiry Committee or before FOSPAH for redressal of their grievances. Ms. Viqar acknowledged that although students are an asset for Pakistan they are also a vulnerable group and therefore require stronger protection from exploitation. In this regard she assured the audience that FOSPAH shall utilize its expanded jurisdiction to safeguard students from harassment.