Posts Tagged ‘Sindh’

Pakistan: the recent killing of Zaki and the non-progress in the case of Perveen Rehman

May 10, 2016

Pakistan remains one to the worst places for human rights defenders as they are threatened by both religious extremists and powerful economic interests, while the State is either unwilling or too weak to stop this trend. A recent example is that of human rights defender Khurram Zaki who was killed on 7 May 2016 by four unidentified gunmen who opened fire at a restaurant in Karachi, killing him and wounding two others. That government efforts to find the killers are unlikely to yield result is shown in the follow-up in the case of human rights defender Perveen Rehman, who was killed on 13 March 2013 (see below). Read the rest of this entry »

Pakistan ‘gone mad’ says regional human rights organisation after murder of Perveen Rehman

March 14, 2013

Ms. Perveen Rehman (56), worked for the betterment of the poor and neglected

A statement of 14 March 2013 by the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) starts dramatically with this “When a small lady weighing hardly 60 kilograms working for the betterment of poor slum-dwellers, and amongst the under-privileged in poorer residential areas, is viewed as a dire threat to the Taliban and the local administration, the sanity of these institutions, and those that man them, is called into question. However, with yesterday’s murder of Ms. Perveen Rehman, an even more fundamental question confronts us: the raison d’être of the Pakistani state itself.”

Ms. Perveen Rehman, an architect by profession, was targeted and murdered in broad daylight yesterday, March 13th. Fifty-six years of age, having worked for the poor and underprivileged for 25 of them, Ms. Rehman was murdered close to her office as she arrived in a car. Armed men riding two motorcycles approached and opened fire on her. She was struck twice in the face and once in the neck. She was rushed to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where she succumbed to her wounds. It is believed that she was assassinated by Deobandi militants of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamat (ASWJ). These are said to be the same militants responsible for the deaths of the four anti-polio workers and the attack on Malala Yusufzai.

The statement then continues to describe Ms. Rehman as a tireless social activist, working for people living in slum areas. She had, however, been receiving death threats for some time. Read the rest of this entry »

Two more human rights lawyers assassinated in Pakistan

February 9, 2013

The Asian Human Rights Commission (regional NGO) reports that two prominent lawyers have been assassinated in targeted killings on 2 February 2013.

Mr. Malik Jarrar 47, a Supreme Court lawyer, was shot dead in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Paktoonkha province by unknown persons, riding a motorcycle. He was on his way to pick up his two sons from school. Mr. Jarrar was the former vice chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Another prominent lawyer, Mr. Mian Muhammad Tariq 55, was also shot dead in similar manner in Karachi, the capital of Sindh province. He was shot dead by unknown assailants when he was parking his car inside his apartment building.

Mr Malik’s was probably a sectarian killing as he was from the Shia sect, the second largest sect of Islam which is under attack by the Taliban and other fundamentalist Sunnis who had declared them as Kafir (infidel) and liable to be killed. In the recent days four prominent Shia were assassinated by unknown persons in Peshawar.

The legal fraternity of the whole country organised a two-day boycott of courts in protest of killings. The lawyers see in the killings of their colleagues the total failure of the government to for maintaining the rule of law in the country.

In the last week four workers of one NGO, HANDS, working to provide health facilities and food rations to poor fisherfolk, were abducted by unknown persons but the government has failed to recover them. Persons who work in favour of human rights, which is deemed contrary to the interests of radical Islamist groups face considerable threat, as may be noted in the killings in 2011 of the Governor of Punjab, Salman Taseer, and the Federal Minister of Minority Affairs, Shabaz Bhatti, who were targeted for their efforts to protect minorities, and their opposition to Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy laws.

So far 87 journalists had been killed in Pakistan since 2000. In the year 2012, eight journalists were killed while performing their official duty.

The irresponsible attitude of the government towards the security and protection of the human rights defenders and the appeasement policy towards the Muslim fundamentalists groups can be judged by the government’s refusal to allow the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights defenders to visit the country. The government, after ratifying the UN ICCPR has accepted a recommendation to do so.

source: http://www.humanrights.asia/news/ahrc-news/AHRC-STM-039-2013

Intolerance a threat to Sindh

September 4, 2012

Yesterday the newspaper Pakistani DAWN contained a short piece by GULSHER PANHWER on the increase in religious intolerance and risks to ‘dissidents’ in Sindh. He says that there is an urgent need to train and educate the youth on tolerance and bring the old trained cadre of human rights activists and the new generation of human rights defenders on one platform. This would be a great barrier against the threat of violence which is a direct result of intolerance.

via Intolerance a threat to Sindh | DAWN.COM.