The 1961 Muslim Family Law Ordinance, continues to have a significant legal impact on the women of Pakistan.
The perpetrator may be acquitted and the victim may face adultery charges.
The threat of being prosecuted discourages victims from filing complaints.
The status of women in Pakistan is one of systemic gender subordination even though it varies considerably across classes, regions, and the rural/urban divide due to uneven socioeconomic development and the impact of tribal, feudal, and capitalist social formations on women's lives.
The Pakistani women of today do, however, enjoy a better status than the past.
The main objective as stated in the Sixth Plan was "to adopt an integrated approach to improve women's status".
In 1985, the National Assembly elected through nonparty elections doubled women's reserved quota (20 percent).
However, Zia-ul-Haq initiated a process of Islamization by introducing discriminatory legislation against women such as the set of Hudood Ordinances and the Qanun-e-Shahadat Order (Law of Evidence Order).
He banned women from participating and from being spectators of sports and promoted purdah.
However, despite that setback, during 1950–60, several pro-women initiatives were taken.