Articles and letters may be edited for the purposes of clarity and space. They are published in good faith with a view to enlightening all the stakeholders. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.
Role of judiciary
This refers to the news report ‘US State Dept criticizes Pakistan’s judicial system; govt, other stakeholders influence judiciary (July 25).
To start with, US government hardly qualifies to take high moral ground and pass judgments on other countries when its own history is replete with crimes against humanity.
The US was built up on the graves of the natives who were hunted down like animals and remained deprived of their rights.
On the international level, the country has spread massive death and destruction around the world, like in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya, etc.
The US presidents have been overthrowing foreign governments and ordering assassination of foreign leaders, with General Suleimani of Iran being their recent victim, with no President ever tried for these crimes.
As for US judiciary, well, a US court sentenced a frail, badly tortured woman, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui to 86 years in prison, on the trumped-up charge of grabbing a rifle and shooting at the American soldier, in the circumstances where nobody got hurt, no bullet marks were found on the walls, and there were no independent witnesses.
However, for our own sake, we have got to take seriously the deficiencies – with many beyond judiciary’s own control – pointed out by the US.
The obvious shortcomings are insufficient number of judges, inefficient and unsatisfactory investigation and prosecution, and vast difference in the capability of the prosecutors which government can attract because of offering low salaries as compared to defence lawyers whose fee in one case could equal a few years’ salary of a government prosecutor.
S R H HASHMI
Practice what you preach
As an aftermath of the War of Independence 1857, numerous Muslims were blown up with cannons by the British in order to terrorize and deter the people.
Alam Bheg, an innocent man, was blown up and his skull was taken as a trophy to the UK by Captain Costello of the British army.
This is just one of the many examples of human rights violations by the West, specifically the UK, and it doesn’t just stop there.
It is quite easy to think of or to come up with a law. It is somewhat hard to get that law enforced.
Such is the case with almost every single law in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR); a document that claims to act like a worldwide guide for freedom, opportunity and equality – protecting and ensuring the rights of every individual across the globe.
According to Article 5 of the UDHR, “No one shall be subjected to torture or truelty, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
Yet, as mentioned, UDHR only claims to do so and does absolutely nothing other than that. The UK takes great pride in preaching and chanting human rights, but ironically, despite all their so-called efforts of implementing human rights, does not practise what they preach when it’s their turn.
Instead, they are too busy dictating human rights to the world. It is about time that they do some introspection instead of constantly and desperately dissimulating themselves. It is only when everyone practises what they say that the world will know real peace.
While laws exist to prosecute heinous crimes of violence, rape, murder etc against women, the problem lies with the attitude of police, state prosecution and their tolerance for such crimes, which is evident by failure to prosecute such criminals.
It is this criminal apathy by law enforcement and a few within the lower judiciary that such crimes are on the rise.
Most crimes against women occur within homes. I fail to understand the opposition by our Ulema to domestic violence which is a crime.
Their argument is as hollow as the decision given by CII in May 2013, that DNA cannot be accepted as primary evidence against a rapist.
Male chauvinism has no place in the religion of Islam, nor is there a single incidence during the life of Holy Prophet (PBUH) where violence against any women, including a wife has been condoned.
Islam emphasizes acquisition of knowledge in science, medicine, technology, economics etc so that it can be used for the welfare of human beings.
DNA is not a creation of scientists, but a discovery of what existed in nature for billions of years.
The Islamic welfare state must exist and precede the imposition of Sharia penalties for any violations and excesses.
The CII and our Ulema must stand up for basic human rights and condemn all criminals who forcibly occupy state and private land and deny women their inheritance in accordance with Holy Quran, and punishing criminals involved in paedophilia within a few seminaries etc and other abuses of power by powerful individuals or groups.
If a man has irreconcilable differences with his wife he has the option to seek divorce in accordance with Sharia Laws instead of beating her to death, or inflicting injuries to her? Islam gives women the right to choose their life partner in marriage, yet we witness this basic right being denied on one pretext or another.
MALIK TARIQ ALI