Asma Jahangir: A Great (Punjabi) Woman

I had to face imprisonment and house arrests, but it made me tougher. As a lawyer, many a time I took up difficult and sensitive cases dealing with minorities’ and women’s rights. Yes, I constantly receive threats, and to be very honest, at times it is very scary. But I have to continue my work.’

Asma Jahangir is a lawyer (to say the least) defending the rights of women, children and men in Pakistan’s harsh climate of religious extremism, misogyny and child abuse. She does it in the courtroom, on the street, in the media, and on the international scene.

Since 1972, when she launched a case against the Government of the Punjab for the release of her father Malik Ghulam Jilani who was arrested for resigning from the National Assembly to protest the Pakistan Government’s military action in Bangladesh, Asma has been an honorable and courageous leader of Pakistan’s political, legal and social movements. She was one of the leaders of the long and often dangerous campaign waged by women activists against the Hadood Ordinances and the draft law on evidence; She forced the parliament to pass a legislation in favor of bonded child laborers of brick kilns. She is a founding/serving member of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), Women Action Forum (WAF), Punjab Women Lawyers Association (PWLA), and of the AGHS Legal Aid Cell that offers free legal services to vulnerable population groups.

In 2010, Asma was elected as the first woman President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan. She is a former chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, and a UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Arbitrary or Summary Executions from 1998 to 2004, and UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion and Belief from 2004 to 2010.

She is the author of Divine Sanction? The Hadood Ordinance (1988) and Children of a Lesser God: Child Prisoners of Pakistan (1992). She has received numerous international and national awards including honorary Doctor of Law degrees from universities in Switzerland, Canada, and the USA; the Right Livelihood Award or the ‘alternative Nobel prize’ in 2014; American Bar Association’s International Human Rights Award in 1992; the Martin Ennals Award, the Ramon Magsaysay Award, and Sitara-I-Imtiaz in 1995.

Asma was placed under house arrest and later imprisoned for participating in the movement for the restoration of democracy against the military regime of General Zia-ul-Haq in 1983. She, and her family, has often been a target of vandalism, violent attacks, hate campaigns and character assassinations carried out by militant groups, political interests and their media representatives. Un-deterred, she continues to be a force to reckon with for each successive government, and for the interest groups who violate the rights of people.

More on Asma is here

Contact Asma Jahangir

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Great Women of Punjabi Origin

Years of unceasing democratic work against armed and unarmed adversaries, and in over four decades of active politics, Asma has refused to serve the interests of any colonial, hegemonic or familial power. At all times, she has taken a firm stand on the side of the people, often being victimized, and she has gone onto extend protection to them wherever and whenever possible. The local and international power brokers have introduced their own heroes who come backed with enormous resources and a wide international network of organizations, forums and media outlets. As is the nature of colonizing mind, they make it appear as if Pakistani women had no history of resistance prior to their presentation of it.

May be all this money, resources and influence will for some time sideline our real heroes such as Asma Jahangir, Hina Jillani, Hussain Naqi, Abdur Sattar Edhi and others. But sooner or later we will see through these schemes, and we will be able to acknowledge the ceaseless contributions to the betterment of our lives of our heroes like Asma Jahangir, and we will find deserving ways to nurture and honor them.

Fauzia Rafique

Contact Uddari

Sign This Petition to Protect Asma Jahangir‏ – Pakistan’s Prime Jurist and Rights Activist

Uddari fully supports this international online petition (signature campaign) launched by Global Human Rights Defence (GHRD) to lobby for the protection of Asma Jahangir, Pakistan’s former UN Special Rapporteur for Religious Freedom and President of the Supreme Court Bar Association. Please Sign and Forward.

Sign The Petition

The petition will be sent to President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, Government of Pakistan as well as international Human Rights organisations, forums, think tanks, peace activists, journalist bodies, lawyers, and members of the European parliaments and their relevant committees. Please sign the petition and send out to your networks and through social media channels.

Asma Jahangir has been an outspoken human rights activist for over 30 years. These threats come at a time when multiple forces are trying to create instability in Pakistan prior to the upcoming elections.

Sign The Petition

Every single signature is important
As said in the press release issued by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), ‘it is not the conspiracy against a single individual rather it is an effort to suppress the freedom of conscience, democracy and cultural diversity in Pakistan. Needless to say, we will fight back and, needless to say, we shall win’.

The URL address for the Petition to Protect Asma Jahangir

Global Human Rights Defence
Laan van Meerdervoort 70
The Hague
Shiraz Raj,
Human Rights Commission of Pakistan

Ten Years of Human Rights Violations: Pakistan 1997- 2008

Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has issued the following URGENT APPEALS for Pakistan during 1997 to July 2008.

Please note that this report brings together instances where the AHRC was moved to issue an Urgent Appeals action, and so, does not present a realistic picture of human rights violations in Pakistan, in that it can tell us about the kind of violations that are occurring but not the extent to which they are rampant in the country.

To get a better idea, please add to this the information provided by Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), Amnesty International, and Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML).

2008 To Date
(From the Nine Urgent Appeals issued in the first half of 2008, Four violations are done by the Police, One by the Army, and Four by influential groups with the support of the Police. Victims/Survivors are poor women, minorities, labourers, peasants, political and social activists.)

A 17-year-old girl was abducted by police officials and kept for almost 16 days in private custody where she was raped and tortured to confess her involvement in the murder of her fiancée. Her elder sister was also brought in police lock up and held, naked for three days naked to pressure the sister to confess to the charges.
PAKISTAN: A girl raped in custody by police officers and her sister kept nude in lock up

The Asian Human Rights Commission has received information that a high ranking police official, Senior Superintendent (SSP) Shafiq Gujjar, of the Punjab police, who was appointed by the newly elected Chief Minister of the Punjab province, Mr. Mian Shahbaz Shareef. Mr. Shafiq, the SSP, has used police officers of four different districts to keep a labourer in illegal detention for the return of some money to which the victim was witness/guarantor. The officers involved continued to deny his arrest even after 15 days following an investigation by a newspaper reporter.
PAKISTAN: Police officials kidnap and arbitrarily detain a labourer for ransom

Two persons have been killed whilst in police custody. One of the deceased was a political activist. In the first statement issued by the police they reported that no weapons were found in the possession of the victim. However, a subsequent statement issued the following day reported that the victims were traveling in a stolen car and that a pistol and ammunition had been recovered.
PAKISTAN: Two persons were killed in police encounter

A peasant was murdered, one was abducted and several more were injured in an attack by a powerful group. After the passing of almost three months no one has yet been arrested. A session court has rejected the application for anticipatory bail before the arrest of the accused persons but even then the police have not bothered to arrest anyone. The peasants have protested by blocking the roads and demanding that the police take action. However, the leader of the attackers is trying to turn the incident into a Muslim and Christian clash. Meanwhile, the victims and their families are suffering continuous harassment.
PAKISTAN: Perpetrators of murder enjoy impunity

A young couple has been threatened with death because they married without the permission of their parents. Powerful persons of the tribe in question, with the support of police authorities have killed a prominent journalist and injured the younger brother of the bride groom who were hiding the couple. The police have not arrested any of the killers, even after three months. The alleged murderers, who were mentioned in the First Information Report (FIR), are roaming around freely. The couple is hiding in different places but is in serious danger as the tribal people are following them.
PAKISTAN: Threat of death of a young couple under the name of honour killing

Officers of a military residential area, the Defence Housing Authority (DHA), have stopped the local inhabitants from fishing in the areas close to the DHA, burned the boats, fishing nets, and their cycles, the only source of communication for fishermen, and barred them from using their ancestral jetty, in the name of beautification of the military residential area. The Sindh provincial government remains silent spectators.
PAKISTAN: Military officers dislocate centuries-old fishing communities

Two peace activists who were a holding demonstration on May 28, 2008, against the tenth anniversary of Pakistan’s nuclear experimental detonations were arrested and one of them remains missing.
PAKISTAN: Anti nuclear demonstrators arrested, one activist remains missing

Mr. Mohammad Khan Lund, a human rights activist is presently in Deeplo Jail after being implicated in 57 cases allegedly by his political rival Dr. Arbab Rahim. The police at his instigation tortured Mr. Lund on several occasions at Deeplo police station and have also harassed his four sons and other family members.
PAKISTAN: A man falsely implicated in 57 First Information Reports (FIRs) and his family members are also facing 33 FIRs

the death sentence of a man from minority community, who is due to be executed on 12 March 2008. He was charged with murder however, he was allegedly severely tortured after the illegal arrest. It is also alleged that he was not provided any legal representative during the military trial. He was not allowed to communicate with his parent during his two years of military custody and meet his parents only after the military court convicted him.
PAKISTAN: Death by hanging of a man set on March 12 after confessing due to torture by military

The physical condition and health of a prominent lawyer, Mr. Munir A. Malik, former president of the Supreme Court of Pakistan Bar Association, whom we reported to have traces of blood in his urine due to severe torture while in custody, continues to deteriorate. Mr. Malik told his physicians after regaining consciousness that his health worsened after he was forced to drink the juices and food rations given to him whom he believed could have contained poison. No action has been taken against those involved in arresting, detaining and torturing him. Though the government claimed they had already released him, the security forces deployed at the hospital admitted that this is not the case.
PAKISTAN: Prominent lawyer tortured, poisoned in detention; two others held incommunicado

The police in Pakistan have been involved in beating, torturing and threatening a French researcher on 20 September 2007 and have not been charged. While no action has been taken against them, the police officials threaten local journalists and a local English language teacher, not to cover the story.
PAKISTAN: Higher police officers have impunity in the torture case of a French researcher

Several judges including the Chief Justice, of the Sindh High Court were threatened by a ruling political party in General Musharraf’s government on accepting the bail applications of several arrested lawyers on 29 September 2007. There were a variety of threats but the Chief Minister of the province condoned the actions of the ruling party, arguing that the writing against the Chief Justice is the “peoples’ voice”. It is alleged that the workers and leadership of the ruling party are involved in the mayhem of May 12, 2007, the killings of two lawyers in recent days and threats to office bearers of different Bar Associations, including attacks on the cars of sitting judges.
PAKISTAN: Chief Justice of a provincial High Court was threatened by a ruling party

One person was shot dead and more than 10 were injured by thugs, with the help of the police, during an illegal demolition on 3 October 2007. However the case has not been filed nor has an investigation been initiated. This is allegedly due to interference from the ruling party, which originally sent the thugs to demolish the houses in the village.
PAKISTAN: One person shot dead and several injured by firing during illegal demolition

About the torture and inhuman treatment of eight persons by the police in Khaipure Mirs District, Sindh. The police tied the detainees with ropes and chains around their necks. The detainees were also forced to bark like dogs and bite each other like wild bears; if they refused, they would be beaten.
PAKISTAN: Torture and inhuman treatments to eight detainees falsely charged by the police

Gross negligence of the part of the High Court of Sindh on persons who are believed to be illegally detained in the military torture cells in Rawal Pindi. Mr. Salim Baloch, the vice president of the Jamhoori Watan Party who was released on 14 December 2006 after his 9 month illegal detention by the military, gave his testimony before the High Court and also gave names of persons who are still detained in the military torture camp in Rawal Pindi where he was detained. However, the High Court simply disposed off his habeas corpus case saying that the case is no longer valid due to his release. The Court neither ordered an inquiry about his torture and illegal detention by the army nor took subsequent action to locate the disappeared persons, who are still detained in the military torture cells in Rawal Pindi.
PAKISTAN: Gross negligence of the High Court of Sindh on disappeared persons who are allegedly detained in the military torture cells

Two more alleged disappearance cases from Sindh province in Pakistan which separately took place in July and August 2006. To date the whereabouts of the victims remain unknown. The victims have gone missing after allegedly being taken by police and army personnel. In one case, the victim was allegedly abducted by the police. In the second case, the victim was arrested by the plain clothed security personnel only because his name was similar with that of a wanted terrorist. In both cases, the police denied of arresting the men and had refused to register the complaints lodged by their families until the courts issued an order. Both victims do not have any political affiliations.
PAKISTAN: Two more persons are missing after being allegedly arrested by the security forces

Regarding a 23 year-old man named Mustafa Rehman who had his college application rejected based on his disability by the King Edward Medical College in Lahore, Punjab province, Pakistan. Even though he is qualified for admission, he has allegedly been denied entry by the university admission committee. The university’s actions are illegal under Pakistani law which clearly states that people who are disabled have a right to pursue higher education as long as the student does not suffer from “mental retardation”.
PAKISTAN: Disabled student has been allegedly denied admission to a medical college based on his condition

The government of the North Western Frontier Province has banned the booklet on Kashmir titled “Kashmir Ki Pukar” (loud voice of Kashmir) on October 21 by issuing an official notification. The writer was informed through telephone calls that if he enters the province he will face dire consequences, including loss of his life. The writer is receiving threatening calls at his home and to his mobile phone insisting that he denounce the book and make an apology in public, otherwise his family will not be safe. The writer says that most of the calls are from the officials of Pakistan secret services (ISI). When the writer made a phone call to the number from which he was receiving the threats no one answers the call. Even if it was answered by chance, there is just an announcement telling that this number is not in use. The police have not yet registered the author’s complaint of being threaten yet.
PAKISTAN: A book on Kashmir was banned and writer is threatened with death by Islamic fundamentalist government of a province

Regarding the disappearance of two political party leaders after being arbitrarily arrested by the police during the peaceful protest meeting in Karachi city, Sindh province, Pakistan on 3 December 2006. The victims were allegedly shifted to an army torture camp and their whereabouts are unknown since then.
PAKISTAN: Two political party leaders are missing after their alleged arrest by the police and army intelligence personnel

Pakistani government has arrested more than 400 political and human rights activists within 72 hours from the night of 27 November 2006 to stop the planned protest during President Musharraff’s two day visit to Balochistan province from 30 November 2006. We were also informed that the government has imposed the maintenance of Public Order Ordinance throughout the province and also arrested the former chief minister of Balochistan. This is clear violation of freedom of assembly and expression of people in Balochistan and we call for your urgent intervention into this matter.
PAKISTAN: More than 400 activists arrested within 72 hours prior to President’s visit to Balochistan

An alleged abduction and subsequent torture of a senior journalist of the BBC by the military personnel from Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Pakistan on 20 November 2006. He was reportedly tortured for about 30 hours at an unknown place and then thrown in a far flung jungle. In a separate incident, the transmissions of Sindh Television network based in Bangkok, Thailand have been banned according to verbal instruction of the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) since 8 November 2006. As far as we have confirmed, no valid written notice has been issued by the PEMRA regarding this matter. The alleged reason is that this Sindh Television was producing a weekly satirical program about the performance of the Pakistan government and government ministers including the president and prime minister.
PAKISTAN: An alleged abduction and torture of a journalist by military personnel and the banning of a Sindh television channel by the government

Regarding the illegal arrest and subsequent brutal torture of Mr. Hayat Khan Marri, a mason by profession and resident of B-437 Sector 7 Bilal Colony in Northern Karachi, by officers of the Liaquatabad Police Station in Karachi city, Sindh province, Pakistan on 30 September 2006.
PAKISTAN: Man implicated with false charges, and brutally tortured by police

Save the life of Mr. Mirza Tahir Hussain (aged 38), who is facing imminent execution scheduled for early November after Ramadan, the fasting month for Muslims. He, who was 18 years old at that time, had been charged with murder in 1988, but was acquitted of all charges against him by the Lahore High Court in 1996. However, the Federal Shariat Court suddenly claimed its jurisdiction over the case under Islamic law, overturned high court judgement and sentenced him to death in 1998. The Supreme Court upheld the judgement of the Shariat Court in 2003 and dismissed Mr. Hussain’s appeal in 2004. Only an act of clemency by the President can save Mr. Mirza Tahir Hussain’s life.
PAKISTAN: A man deprived of a fair trial faces imminent execution

About the severe torture of two men by the Saddar police in Faisalabad district, Punjab province, Pakistan on 10 September 2006. The victims have been reportedly charged with a false blasphemy case after the police failed to present concrete evidence of an alleged theft case against them. In Pakistan, charging a person with the blasphemy laws is the easiest way to book any minority person. We also received information that the families of the victims fled their homes due to the brutal attack by local Muslims and that the lives of the victims are in danger due to constant threats by the other inmates in the jail. We call for your immediate intervention into this case to ensure the safety of the victims.
PAKISTAN: Torture of two men after being falsely charged under blasphemy law

The Ministry of Defence Production has illegally banned the trade unions of an industrial corporation named Karahi Shipyard and Engineering Works (KSEW) in Karachi city, Sindh province, Pakistan on 26 August 2006. The cancellation order of the registration of the concerned trade unions was imposed without lawful procedures. This action directly affects about 3,000 workers.
PAKISTAN: Illegal ban of trade unions by the government

Regarding a discriminatory close down of the The Mast FM 103 radio station at Balakot, North West Frontier Province by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) on 23 August 2006. It is believed that the PEMRA’s action is due to the Mast FM 103’s criticism on the alleged misuse of funds and corruption in the rehabilitation programmes carried out by the government agencies in the earthquake affected area.
PAKISTAN: A radio station was discriminatorily closed down by the government

Regarding the destruction of Christian churches and schools by people enraged at the alleged blasphemy of the Holy Quran. According to the information we have received, on 12 November 2005, a mob attacked three Churches, a Sister’s Convent, a Christian school building and a Pastor’s house. The mob vandalised and destroyed properties in Sangla Hills for over an hour. Christian families living in the Sangla Hills were forced to leave their homes the night before due to the threats and intimidation from locals living in the area.
PAKISTAN: Desecration and destruction of churches and Christian property after blasphemy allegations at Sangla Hills, Pakistan

Regarding an extrajudicial killing of a young man by the Khosar police. According to the information we have received, Mr. Amjad Masih (25), who was accused of the theft, was tortured to death by the Khosar police in front of his sister on around 22 October 2005. Four responsible officers were arrested with murder charges on October 23 after the outraged local villagers of the France Colony shouted for justice outside the Khosar Police Station. This is ¤± good development that the perpetrators were arrested, however the AHRC worries that they will escape from punishment in the end as happened in many previous cases in Pakistan.
PAKISTAN: A young man beaten to death by the Khosar police in Islamabad

Regarding the murder of a 16-year-old girl following a Jirga calling for her death for having dishonoured her tribe. Ms. Bashi of the Luhar tribe left her parents home to marry Mr. Munaware of the Otho tribe. When her father and several relatives approached the elder of their tribe, Mr. Mir Hassan Luhar, he called upon a Jirga of the eminent persons of his tribe. The Jirga at first found that the girl must be returned to her tribe. In a second hearing it decided that the girl must be killed. Accordingly, the girl’s father and six other relatives took the girl to a nearby canal where they suffocated her and buried her body.
PAKISTAN: Jirga orders the murder of a 16-year-old girl

Yet another honour killing case in Shikarpur District, Sindh Province, Pakistan. According to this information, 22-year-old, Ms. Soneet was killed by her husband, Mohammad Sidique on 17 September 2005. It was reported that Mohammed Sidique killed his wife on suspicion of her having had extra-marital relations with her relative, Mr. Noor Mohammad. A First Investigation Report (FIR) No. 162/05 under Sections 302, 201 Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) has been registered regarding this case at the New Faujdari police station, whose officials maintain that an investigation is underway, but has not been completed as yet. However, our sources say that the police are in fact avoiding the case and have said that the victim’s death is a “private matter”. The police are apparently also of the view that both sides will reconcile their differences once in court.
PAKISTAN: A husband suffocated and drowned his wife on the pretext of an honour killing

Regarding approximately 50 civil activists who were charged with sedition against the State by the police after they held a protest at the Lakhi Gate Tower Ghowk on 17 October 2004. The protesters gathered at the Lakhi Gate Tower Ghowk to express their concern over growing insecurity of life and property due to deteriorating law and order in Shikarpur district.
PAKISTAN: A group of human rights defenders charged with sedition in Shikarpur

Another honor killing case from Sindh Province, Pakistan. According to the information received, a 16-year-old girl, Gulzar, and her 19-year-old cousin, Ghulam Mustafa, were killed by Gulzar’s brother, Abdul Majeed, on 21 April 2004 on the pretext of honor killing. Even though he has filed the complaint against the perpetrator, Ghulam Mustafa’s father has shown his distrust in the Pakistani legal system and wants to settle this matter through a tribal court jirga, which was banned by the Sindh High Court decision of last April. In Pakistan, the victims’ families prefer the jirga system rather than the government’s judicial system to deal with their matters, because it has failed to provide speedy justice to the victims.
PAKISTAN: A dual murder of 16-year-old girl and a 19-year-old boy on the pretext of honor killing

A 20-year-old woman named Saran has been killed by her husband Nawab in the pretext of honor killing on 8 September 2004. The perpetrator has not been arrested yet. This is already the twelfth honor killing case AHRC has reported from Sindh Province since February.
PAKISTAN: A young woman killed by her husband with false allegation

Another honor killings case from Sindh Province, Pakistan. According to the information received, Ms. Mehan (22) was shot dead by her nephew Altaf (25) at her house in in Mirzapur village, Shikarpur district, Sindh province early in the morning of 7 July 2004. After killing his aunt, Altaf claimed that he killed her because she had illicit sexual relations with a man named Mr. Dilshad. It is reported that Mr. Dilshad left the village because he feared being killed by Altaf.
PAKISTAN: A woman killed by her nephew on the pretext of honor killing

A cleric, Qari Mohammad Noor, arrested last week for suspected al-Qaeda links has died in custody in controversial circumstances. While the post-mortem reports have not been disclosed to the public, human rights groups claim that there were marks of torture on Noor’s body.
PAKISTAN: A cleric dies in custody after being detained for suspected al-Qaeda links

Another case of honor killing from Shikarpur district, Sindh province, Pakistan. According to the information received, on 14 July 2004, Ms. Sabhai (40) was shot dead by her younger brother Aashiq Ali (32) alias Babu in front of her son at the bus stop near Bhaya canal, Karan village, Shiarpur district. According to the victim’s son, his uncle blamed his mother for having illicit relations with a man named Mumtaz who is their distant relative. However, he maintained that his mother was innocent and his uncle imposed the fake allegation on her. It was also reported that Aashiq Ali was allegedly spurred by his friends to kill his sister because she was a shame to his family.
PAKISTAN: A brother killed his sister on the pretext of honor killing

Another “honor killing” case reported from Shikarpur district, Sindh Province, Pakistan. Even though AHRC has issued several honor killing cases, the state government of Sindh province as well as the government of Pakistan have not taken any serious action to abolish this brutal practice.
PAKISTAN: Honor killing takes lives of 19-year-old girl and 30-year-old man

Regarding the assault and abduction of Pastor Wilson Fazal, on 16 May 2004 in Quetta, Pakistan. Prior to this incident, three churches in Quetta had reportedly received letters instructing them to expel all Muslims from their institutions and to abandon their preaching and other activities. This case reflects the ongoing abuse of minorities and religious intolerance in Pakistan. Your urgent action is required to pressure the Government of Pakistan to take effective steps in protecting the rights of all minorities and ensuring that discriminatory legislation is repealed.
PAKISTAN: Christian pastor abducted and assaulted in Quetta

Zafar Iqbal, who had been in police custody in connection with a house robbery attempt, has allegedly been tortured to death by the police officers from the Westridge Police Station in Rawalpindi Division. The victim¡¦s body was not yet found. Your urgent action is required to correct this matter.
PAKISTAN: A man was disappeared after being severely tortured at the Westridge Police Station

The police illegally arrested and severely tortured 10-year-old Tasawar Abbas, in order to know the whereabouts of his elder brother even though he did not commit any crime. His father, who was accused of illegally cutting grass from the landlord’s field, was also tortured at the police station. It is a brutal human rights violation and the AHRC requests your action to correct this matter immediately.
PAKISTAN: A 10-year-old boy and his father severely tortured by police officers

The imminent execution of a juvenile offender, Mohammad Amin, aged 16. Your urgent action is required to pressure the Pakistan government to commute the death sentence of Mohammad Amin.
PAKISTAN: Imminent execution of a juvenile offender

An 18-year-old young boy Sunil Samuel was sexually assaulted by inmates at Camp Jail Lahore. After lodging a complaint [to prison authorities], he was tortured to death by two prison officials on 19 August 2003. Your urgent action is requested to pressure the Pakistani government to conduct the impartial and immediate investigation into Sunil Samuel’s case and arrest the responsible persons to justice.
PAKISTAN: Christian youth, Sunil Samuel, 18, sexually assaulted and tortured to death

On September 30, 2002, police clashed with protestors peacefully demonstrating against the Mangla Dam extension in Mirpur, a city in the Pakistani controlled area of Kashmir. The police attacked the demonstrators with batons and tear gas, arresting 13 people and injuring others. Mr. Najeeb Asfar, a member of the Association of British Kashmiris, reported that following the incident, most of Mirpur City was put under curfew.
KASHMIR: Pakistani police assault peaceful demonstrators

The Joint Action Committee for Peace (JAC) strongly condemns the gruesome killing of seven staff members of Idara-e-Amn-o-Insaf and demands security to those who were injured in the gory incident that took place in the office of the organization. They are the eyewitnesses of the incident and their life is at great risk. We urge the government to fulfill its primary responsibility of providing security to its citizens.
PAKISTAN: Seven Christian human rights and peace activists were killed by militant group

An additional sessions judge in Lahore imposed the death penalty and a fine of 500,000 rupees (US,335) on Mr. Anwar Kenneth, a former officer in the government’s Fisheries Dept., in a blasphemy case that was registered with the Gawalmandi police in Pakistan.
PAKISTAN: Another person sentenced to death under blasphemy law

There have been at least 150 people killed, 400 injured and 100,000 people have left their homes and migrated in Kashmir since mid-May 2002. Heavy weapons are killing daily innocent civilians and destroying homes and other public and private property, and civilians are being forced to flee on both sides of the LOC. After the statement of Indian Prime Minister, Atal Bahari Vajpayee that India is going to start a decisive war against Pakistan, panic has spread among the public, particularly in Kashmir.
KASHMIR (INDIA/PAKISTAN): Clouds of war and killing of innocent civilians across the Line of Control (LOC) in Kashmir

This is an update on the attack at the office of IDAR-O-INSAF (Institute for Justice and Peace) on 25 September 2002, which left seven activists dead and one seriously injured. The sole witness of the incident, Mr. Robin Peeran Ditta (32) was kidnapped by the police and later released. Actually, Mr. Ditta had been illegally held in custody and considered a suspect because only his life was spared. Therefore, his family and lawyers had been feared for his safety and believed that he was being tortured.
UPDATE (PAKISTAN): Sole witness of attack kidnapped, lawyers and activists beaten by the police

We have discovered with dismay that despite a previous Supreme Court stay of execution on the young Pakistani mother Robina Khan (also known as Rubina Ansari), the sentence may still go ahead. President Musharraf has apparently stated that the sentence could be commuted on the proviso that the family of Ms. Hajjan Aziz Begun, aged 70, (who was allegedly murdered by Ms. Rubina in the case) accepted the reduction in sentence.
PAKISTAN: Rubina’s life still in danger

The killing of Ayub Masih by the military government of Pakistan under the infamous Blasphemy Law 295-C. Under this law, the only evidence needed is one ‘reliable’ man’s word that the accused made derogatory remarks against Prophet Muhammad. In this case the one ‘reliable’ male witness has benefited enormously – financially and socially – from the conviction. This should be reason enough to throw the case out.
PAKISTAN: Death Sentence for Alleged Blasphemy

The military government of Pakistan plans to carry out the death sentence on Ms. Robina Khan, aged 22, on the 17th July. She will be killed by hanging, unless the President chooses to commute her sentence. She is being held at the Multan Women’s Jail [First Incident Report no. 310, Factory area, Sargodha police station].
PAKSITAN: Young mother sentenced to death

We have received reliable information from religious group in Pakistan regarding Mr. Parvez Masih, who has been accused of blasphemy and now faced with grave danger. Blasphemy in Pakistan is an ill-defined offense that carries the mandatory death sentence.
PAKISTAN: Death threats to minorities by the fundamentalist

Over the last week, more than 2000 activists and politicians have been arrested by Pakistan’s military regime. On March 23rd, Pakistan National day, the 16-party Alliance for the Restoration of Democracy (ARD) attempted to hold protest to call for an immediate end to military rule. As of result, a further 100 political leaders, including Javed Hashmi (a senior figure in the Pakistan Muslim League) were arrested by police.
PAKISTAN – Denial of Right to Freedom of Assembly, Political Arrests

Fr. Arnold Heredia (60), former Executive Secretary of the Committee for Justice & Peace Karachi, was among 17 protestors arrested and detained in Karachi at 4.00 p.m. on 10 January, 2001. As of the time of writing, an application for their release on bail has not been accepted. Two other Christian laymen, Aslam Martin and Riaz Nawab, are among the detainees.
PAKISTAN: A human rights activist Fr. Arnold Heredia was detained

Regarding Dr. Younus Shaikh, who has been arrested for ‘Blasphemy’ in Pakistan. Blasphemy is an ill-defined offense which carries the mandatory death sentence in Pakistan. As such, Dr. Shaikh’s life is in grave danger. Below is all of the information about Dr. Shaikh’s case from IHEU, followed by suggested actions.
PAKISATAN: Dr. Shaikh may face Death Sentence for Blasphemy

The operation began in February/March 1999 when a katchi abadi of over 600 households was demolished. This abadi was named Sumbul Kuruk and stood near Rawal Dam. In this abadi resided “mutasreen” who had never been properly compensated by the CDA after they had acquired the land in teh 1960s. There were also later migrants who were illegal settlers but had lived there for up to 35 years with the implicit consent of the CDA. These people are now spread out all over the city, most of them renting rooms on a temporary basis.
PAKISTAN: Bulldozers set to move in on katchi abadi


A joint delegation of Christian and Muslim leaders met with Raja Zafarul Haq, Federal Minister for Religious and Minorities Affairs, on May 19,1998 in Islamabad and expressed their concern over the misuse of blasphemy laws. They also shared their grievances about those falsely accused under these laws. During the meeting the Christian leaders called for the repeal of the laws.
Pakistan: Situation After the Death of Bishop John Joseph

The funeral service of Bishop John Joseph, who committed suicide as a protest against the blasphemy laws in Pakistan on 6 May 1998 , was held in his native village Khushpur, District Faisalabad, Friday 8th May.. Though the government of Pakistan tried to minimize the effect of the Bishop’s death by controlling the news, thousands of people, Christians (Catholics and Protestants) and Muslims attended the funeral service. Other mourners included diplomats, political figures and well known human rights activists Asma Jehangir, I.A.Rehman, and Hina Jillani. People came from various parts of the country to pay homage to their beloved leader.
Pakistan: Message by NCJPP on Bishop’s Death and Funeral

Bishop John Joseph fired a bullet into his head on 6 May 1998 in a court-house where a Catholic was sentenced to death on 27 April under the blasphemy law of Pakistan. The blasphemy law in Pakistan has been condemned throughout the world for many years, but there had been no change in the provisions of the criminal law, which allow death sentence for alleged acts of blasphemy. Under the blasphemy law, a person is convicted on the same day on which he is accused of the offence. At the trials under these laws no defenders are allowed to represent the accused, and the courts themselves have to reckon with the intense pressure of fundamentalists. In many instances, this law is abused for private purposes such as land disputes or business rivalries.
Pakistan: Eminent Catholic Bishop Sacrifices His Life to Protest

16 April 98 the District management supported by police force demolished the All Pakistan Trade Union Office. The office is located at 114 – Gulberg Road, Industrial Area, Kashmir Road, Gulberg, Lahore. No warning was given by the police. Police aggressively attacked the workers and beaten them when they try to stop the demolition.
Pakistan: Five Unionists Arrested and Office Demolished


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