Human right groups condemn Kabirwala incident
* Demand legislation against jirgas
* Ask woman MPs to address the issue of violence against women in assemblies
LAHORE The National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW) and the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) have strongly condemned the “Kabirwala incident”, an event that occurred on Thursday when a man raped two sisters to implement the orders of a panchayat (local jury).
The human right groups issued separate statements on Friday, urging female parliamentarians and senators to address the issues of violence against women. The NSCW said it was shocked to hear the inhuman act against the innocent women.
“Such an incident in an Islamic state is a matter of shame, not only for the commission but for every citizen,” said its statement.
It added the panchayat’s order was illegal and had no religious foundation. “The jury’s order itself is repugnant to the Islamic injunctions and is in violation of the Constitution of Pakistan.”
The commission appealed to the state authorities to immediately ban all ‘jirgas’ and check violence against women.
It said the law enforcing agencies must arrest Ghaffar along with the jury members and everyone who facilitated the execution of the panchayat orders. They must be jailed, the statement added.
It said the law enforcing agencies must remain vigilant and stop the formation of such panchayats.
The state must take prompt action in such cases before the jury orders are executed.
The HRCP statement slammed the jirga system, questioning how such illegal verdicts could be issued and implemented when the authorities previously claimed such crimes would be checked after Mukhtaran Mai was gang raped in early 2003. It said the government’s failure explained why these jirgas had continued announcing such terrible sentences, persecuting innocent people and causing immense physical and emotional suffering to the victims and their families.
The HRCP statement claims “this incident has revealed that the government’s commitment to eradicate crime against women is nothing but cosmetic”.
The HRCP demands legislation against jirgas.
In its statement, it demands the police and district administrations to stop such intolerable gatherings from taking place, adding that their failure could result in more tragic incidents. staff report