Tag Archives: torture

DISAPPEARANCES IN BALOCHISTAN

A Statement of Concern By the Committee of Progressive Pakistani-Canadians

The fundamental human and civil rights of the people of Balochistan have been violated since the creation of the state of Pakistan. Beginning in 1948 the Pakistan Army has conducted five major repressive campaigns in that province. Under the latest of these ‘operations’ which started with the military takeover of General Parvez Musharraf and continues to date, there has been introduced a new tool of repression, forced disappearances, a practice which has been declared a crime against humanity by the International Court of Criminal Justice.

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Who beat up Umar Cheema?

Who Was Behind Umar Cheema’s Torture?

There is a lot to be said for journalistic instinct.

The moment one heard the shameful story of the abduction, humiliation and beating of The News’ Islamabad-based investigative reporter Umar Cheema, something sounded too pat. …

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Court fails to arrest Rana Maqbool accused of torture and conspiracy to kill President Zardari

PAKISTAN: A court fails to arrest a fugitive police chief

AHRC-STM-145-2010 (July 6, 2010) : A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission

Rana Maqbool Ahmed is a former Inspector General of Police of Sindh province and has been accused of the torture of and conspiracy to kill President Zardari when he was imprisoned in 1999. Rana has been absconding court and the Additional District Sessions Court, Karachi, capital of Sindh province, has issued a warrant for his arrest.

While the warrant was pending Rana appeared before the Lahore High Court, Punjab province, in a separate case. He sought protective bail from the Lahore High Court not to arrest him on the warrant that had been pending since 2008 at the Session Court of Karachi as he intended to surrender himself to this court. The Lahore High Court did not execute the warrant and instead set him free.

This judgement has come under severe criticism and has been perceived as a deviation from the normal practice of Pakistani courts. When an absconder appears before a court the court will take steps to arrest the person and execute the warrant and produce him before the court in which he is wanted. This general practice has been deviated from in this instance without any valid reason. This case is being perceived as a favour done for the former IGP for political reasons.

Meanwhile reports have appeared that the Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court has openly associated with Rana on public occasions. Such open association of a Chief Justice with a person who has a pending arrest warrant has also created impressions that such acts are being done for political reasons.

Thus, this affair has become a scandal against the Lahore High Court and is being perceived as an act done as a personal favour for an accused that is under serious charges of torture and conspiracy to murder. As this matter has become a scandal public confidence in the independence of the judiciary has been damaged and it is the duty of the Supreme Court of Pakistan to investigate the matter and take appropriate action against the judges who appear to have acted for political reasons in protecting a fugitive from the process of law.

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Continue reading Court fails to arrest Rana Maqbool accused of torture and conspiracy to kill President Zardari

People of Lyari Revolt against illegal operation

by: Khalid Hashmani

The people of Lyari have had enough with the false promises from PPP leaders and PPP-MQM government that has launched an operation against Lyari people. The mostly Baloch and Sindhi residents of Lyari had been ardent supporters of People’s Party and scores of them sacrificed their lives for PPP’s political victories. They are now organizing themselves away from PPP and forming an alliance with Balochistan freedom seeking parties and Sindhi nationalist parties.

According to the daily News http://www.thenews.com.pk/print1.asp?id=219223, to read Gahazi Salahuddin’s column, please click here

“…during the night between Sunday and Monday reflected a level of political awareness and communal solidarity that is remarkable.. … the citizens of Lyari staged a protest demonstration and marched, in tens of thousands, from Lyari to the Press Club”. The newspaper goes on to say that it was a “huge show” showed impressive organization and planning skills. It was a peaceful march and people mainly expressed their anger through their slogans. The newspaper called the demonstration as an” emotional vote of no confidence” against the PPP government.

Another interesting development is the signs of increasing influence of Baloch nationalists fast replacing the PPP loyalties among the people of Lyari. A video of a demonstration in Lyari by Baloch nationalists shows this changes through words and sights http://qik.com/ zayedbaloch/.

The same Daily News article also comments that “Karachi beginning to establish its linkages with the politics of Sindh and Balochistan”. There are now abundant signs that people of Sindh including Lyari are fed up with the status quo that allows MQM to operate outside of all norms, rules and regulations and the clue-less PPP leaders who are trampling their own constituents.

January 17, 2010

The video of beating Taliban suspects

by Omar Ali

This is a video of the army interrogating some Taliban suspects and they all get beaten during interrogation. Which is not unexpected and is probably no worse than what most other armies do in counter-insurgency, but its not good either. One must disapprove of such treatment of suspects even if one knows that it happens in every insurgency. Which is why it would have been better if we had not allowed things to reach this stage.

Btw, for those unfamiliar with the everyday standards of torture in the Indian subcontinent, I will add that this particular army detachment is pretty amateur and “soft” and would get laughed out of any police station in India, Pakistan or Bangladesh. The officer even gets his men to stop at several points while the suspect is still only lightly injured. If you want to see real torture, you will have to go to a thana in Lahore or Delhi or Amritsar. American police stations used to do a pretty thorough job of beating suspects in the old days, but one must admit that standards in the US have really changed and serious torture of the subcontinental variety is now the exception rather than the rule. England (and the Scandinavians, to the best of my knowledge) is probably the most civilized in this respect, with police torture being a most rare exception indeed. The coarser aspects of British society do exist, but their police is still among the most amazingly civilized in the world….which is neither here nor there, but I thought I would put it in anyway; The security apparatus in most countries is still so casually cruel that one should make an effort to give credit where credit is due…

Courtesy: crdp@yahoogroups.com

Military seeking revenge against Taliban in Swat for heavy causalities, senior offical says

Pakistan army tied to killings

by Jane Perlez and Pir Zubair Shah, Islamabad

Courtesy: Toronto Star, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2009

Mingora – Two months after the Pakistani army wrested control of the Swat Valley from Taliban militants, a new campaign for fear has taken hold, with scores, perhaps hundreds, of bodies dumped on the streets in what human rights advocates and local residents say is the work of the military. In some, cases, people may simply have been seeking revenge against the ruthless Taliban, in a society that tends to accept tit-for-tat reprisals, local politicians said.

But the scale of the retaliation, the similarities in the way that many of the victims have been tortured and the systematic nature of the deaths and disappearances in areas that the military firmly controls have raised suspicions. Local residents, human rights workers and some Pakistani officials conclude the millitary has had a role in the campaign. The Pakistani army, which is supported by the United States and in the absence of effective political  leadership is running much of Swat with an iron hand, has strenuously denied any involvement with the killings. The army has acknowledged the bodies have turned up, but its spokesmen assert they are the result of civilians setting scores with collaborators. “There are no extrajudicial killings in our system,” said army spokesman Col. Akhtar Abbas. “If something happens, we have a foolproof accountability system.” Neighbours of the victims and Swat residents say there is something more going on than revenge killing by civilians. A senior politician from the region and a former interior minister, Aftab Ahmed Sherpao, said he was worried about the army’s involvement in the killings. “There have been reports of extrajudicial killings by the military that are of concern,” he said. “This will not help bring peace.” The operation in Swat, begun under public pressure from the United States, has been hailed by Washington as a showcase effort of the army’s newfound resolve to defeat the militants. The American ambassador, Anne patterson, visited Mingora, the biggest town in Swat, last week, becoming the first senior American official to go to Swat since the army took over. Now, concerns over the army’s methods in the area threaten to further taint Washington’s association with the military, cooperation that has been questioned in Congress and has been politically unpopular in Pakistan. The number of killings suggests the military is seeking to silence enthusiasm for the Taliban and to settle accounts for heavy army causalties, said a senior provincial official who declined to be identified for fear of reprimand by the army. – Source – Toronto Star, page – A12, Tuesday, Sep 15, 2009.

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To read more about Army Torture video at BBC Urdu, click here or click the following link of BBC

http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/2009/10/091002_army_torture_video_zs.shtml

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Link to watch video of human rights abuses click here or click the following link;

http://pkpolitics.com/2009/10/01/human-rights-abuses-by-pakistan-army/

Pakistani Hindu Migrants Prefer To Stay Back India

Jodhpur: “We Hindus in Pakistan are being discriminated against, tortured and harassed,” complains Ram Lal, a 45-year-old migrant from Pakistan, one of the estimated 10,000 migrants from that country settled in and around here in the desert state of Rajisthan. He come to Jodhpur with his family of five over six months ago when, he says, things started to worsen.” I do not want to go back… being a Hindu, there are so many problems for you in Pakistan,” Ram Lal told IANS, adding that only one member of his family, his brother, now lives in Pakistan

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India – Police abuses’

A report – titled Broken System: Dysfunction, Abuse and Impunity in the Indian Police.

NEW DELHI – Inida’s police force has been accused of extrajudicial killings, torture and carrying out illegal detentions, human rights campaigners have said. “India’s status as the world’s largest democracy is undermined by a police that thinks it is above the law,” Brad Adams, Asia Director of Human Rights Watch (HRW), said on Tuesday. Indian police continue to use their old methods: abuse and threats…