senate committee opposes public executions upholding human dignity and legal precedents (1)
The Senate’s Standing Committee on Human Rights in Islamabad has taken a firm Stand against Proposed Statutory amendments advocating Public executions for Capital Offenses. Following a majority Vote the Committee led by Senator Walid Iqbal Emphasized the importance of Upholding Fundamental rights as Guaranteed by the Constitution and Relevant Pakistani Laws. The Members urged the House to Reject any legislative Proposals Supporting Public Executions for Capital Offenses.
However two Senators Dr Mehr Taj Roghani and Dr Humayun Mohmand Expressed Disagreement Questioning the Committee’s Decision-making Process and Suggesting a lack of thorough Research on the Potential Deterrent effects of Public Executions. The Committee Received Comprehensive Briefings on the Subject from the Secretary of the Ministry of Human Rights and the Secretary of the National Commission for Human Rights.
The Briefings Highlighted a 1994 Supreme Court judgment Declaring Public Executions Contrary to the inviolability of Human Dignity a Stance Reinforced by the Lahore High Court in 2018 in the Zainab Case. The Federal Shariat Court also endorsed the importance of Upholding Human Dignity in line with Quranic teachings.
International conventions including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which Pakistan has Ratified, were Emphasized during the Discussions. These agreements Prohibit Public Executions as Cruel and inhuman. The Committee Stressed that Global Research and Empirical Evidence indicate that Public Executions can have a Brutalizing Effect on Society, Potentially increasing Crime Rates.
Additionally the Secretary of the Ministry of Human Rights briefed the Committee on the Bangkok Rules, Focusing on Gender Sensitivities Concerning Under-trial and Convicted Prisoners. The Committee deferred Discussions on the implementation of these Rules in Pakistan to a Subsequent Meeting where the Chairperson of the National Commission on the Status of Women is Expected to attend. Representatives from the Commission were directed to Gather additional Data and information from all Provinces on this Subject.
The meeting attended by Senators and Senior Officials from related Departments addressed the Complex issue of Public executions and Highlighted the importance of international Agreements, Legal Precedents and the Need for further Research and information Gathering.