A hope for human rights
By: MIAN ASAD MAHMUD
The need for upholding and propagating human rights in Pakistan is dire. The country is going through an unprecedented political and humanitarian turmoil. But the ray of hope is also there fortunately. It is for the first time that the judiciary is taking a tough stand against the security agencies as well as other perpetrators of attacks and excesses against the hapless and defenseless people.
It appears, the same sense of upholding the human rights also exists in the conscience of the present government, which however has been found wanting in its obligation to rescue the people in distress. Talking of human rights, one cannot forget the role of Media in the Pakistan which has left no stone unturned to bring to the record violations of basic human rights ranging from bomb blasts to target killings of minorities particularly Shias across the country.
We can safely applaud media for spreading awareness among the masses for their rights and providing succor to the state as well. The good thing is that the judiciary has joined hands with media and is taking action on every published report of violations of human rights. This joint action was much needed in a country like Pakistan where extra-judicial killings, forced disappearances, sectarian killings and other violations of human rights are rampant.
According to a report published by the Human Rights Ministry, 14,181 incidents of karo kari, kidnapping for ransom and gang rape have taken place in Punjab alone. Similarly, 1,322 such incidents have occurred in Sindh, 371 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 85 in the federal capital, the report says. The number of deaths in Balochistan is unbelievably large. A welcome step taken by the government has been the formation of human rights commission. This must, however be given the praise that is its due. The commission must act as an independent body to check crimes against humanity or against any abuse or violation of human rights. It must be admitted though that PPP-led coalition government has been a supporting factor to the Media and the Judiciary.
As things stand, there are a number of cases which are being dealt by the Human Rights Wing of the PPP as well. Anyone can approach the Human Rights Wing of the party by sending an application to the concerned quarters for instance the governor house. This is how on various fronts, the PPP is playing its role. It does not matter how little the gains are but at least we are moving in the right direction., Lahore, September 6.