Judicial reforms – 29 Jul 2022

In a joint meeting of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) and the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC), the legal community has asked the government to legislate regulation of the exercise of jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, in particular the discretionary powers of the chief justice in the formation of benches, fixing cases and initiating suo-motu cases. They have also reiterated a longstanding demand that the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) amend its rules to allow nominations for judicial appointments to be initiated by any member of the commission rather than the chief justice on his/her own. For many legal experts, these demands are not without merit, particularly after the recent controversy surrounding a three-member SC bench.

The past few days have particularly been tense as far as the relationship between the legislative and judicial arms of the state are concerned, the government in full attack mode over the Punjab CM case that has just been decided by the apex court. Wednesday’s National Assembly session saw Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif alleging that the higher judiciary treats the ruling coalition differently than the PTI and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari using the 58(2)(b) analogy for the judiciary, while calling for the government to form a parliamentary committee for judicial reforms. Needless to say, all this is leading into a rather nightmarish ‘clash of institutions’ domain – something the country can easily do without. Will any legislation by parliament be seen as politicians meddling in judicial affairs after a bad verdict? The PTI will obviously portray it as such even though the issue has been raised time and again by bar associations. When the 18th Amendment was passed, it gave parliament a role in judicial appointments but after reservations by the judiciary, it was reversed and the 19th Amendment was then passed in order to avoid a conflict between the chief executive and the judiciary. Since then, a need for judicial reforms has been felt and this long-pending agenda must now get the attention it requires. Former prime ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif in their Charter of Democracy had hinted at judicial reforms but the matter did not come to a serious discussion that could result in the supremacy of parliament as the only law-making body.

Ever since the lawyers’ movement back in 2007, the legal fraternity and civil society felt that its success would inevitably translate into judicial reforms. We have seen some chief justices try to reform the lower courts and the judicial process but the question of judicialization of politics seeps in ever too often. It is important to remember that in the dispensation of justice, the perception of justice too cannot be ignored. This is something that seems to also nag at those within the judicial system. Only yesterday, the matter of the CJ’s nomination of judges of higher courts for their appointment to the Supreme Court was deferred in the JCP. We hope that, instead of politically-motivated hasty steps, any effort at judicial reform includes the opinion of senior constitutional and legal experts so that a comprehensive reform package can take shape. The prime purpose of any judicial reform must be to prevent the use of unbridled powers of any institution at the cost of others. And at the base of any attempt at justice or governance must be respect for the grundnorm of the land – the constitution. No matter the politics or any particular legal issue, reverence for the constitution by all parts of state and government must be the bare minimum.

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Police ‘solve’ 90% of sexual assault cases – 29 Jul 2022

Senior police officer says use of modern technology yields positive results

The experience of using modern technology by Rawalpindi police in investigating heinous cases of rape and sexual assault of women and children remained successful.

According to police data, the ratio of tracing and arresting the accused in sexual assault cases has exceeded 90 per cent.

In the last seven months, 62 accused involved in 66 cases of sexual assault were arrested and sent to jail.

The data obtained from the city police said that 51 women and 15 children were sexually assaulted in the first seven months of this year. Of these cases, 48 accused of raping women and 14 accused of raping children were arrested.

According to the data, there is only one case registered at the Wah Cantonment police station where the accused could not be arrested, while the accused in all other cases have been arrested and sent behind bars.

SSP Operations Waseem Riaz while talking to The Express Tribune said that the Rawalpindi police’s experience of using modern technology in investigating cases of sexual abuse of women and children has been successful. Now onwards, the police will do away with the age-old investigation procedure, he said.

He said that with the use of DNA reports, polygraphic tests, impotence tests, geo-fencing and other modern technologies including mobile tracing technology in serious cases, it has become difficult for the accused involved in such serious cases to escape from arrest.

The police officer said that there was a zero-tolerance policy in the investigation of sexual assault cases. At any police station where a case of sexual assault takes place all police officers including the CPO supervise the investigation of the case, he said.

“With the use of modern technology in the investigation of serious cases, not only the accused are arrested quickly, but also the solid evidence against them cannot be challenged in any court.

Its biggest advantage is that now the accused cannot avoid punishment,” he said.

He said that the Rawalpindi police were confident that if the success ratio in the investigation of cases of heinous nature remains the same, it will help prevent crimes and ensure the safety of women and children significantly.

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Man gets death sentence for raping daughter – 29 Jul 2022

KOHAT: Additional district and sessions judge-VI Farah Tabassum here on Thursday awarded death sentence to a man for sexually assaulting his daughter.

The judge also gave him three years in prison and a fine of Rs150,000 for threatening to kill or sell his daughter under section 506 of PPC.

A statement issued here said that on Dec 30, 2020, a 14-year-old girl of Jarwanda reported to the cantonment police that her father Sultan Mehmood had been repeatedly molesting her. She stated that he had been warning her not to disclose it otherwise he would kill or sell her.

The police arrested him and started investigations on the basis of which he was sentenced to death.

The police have shifted him to the prison. — Correspondent

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Peshawar police arrest 20-year-old for sexually assaulting, killing minor girls – 29 Jul 2022

PESHAWAR: The police have arrested a young man here for sexually assaulting three minor girls and 1(illing two of them earlier this month.

Provincial Inspector General of Police Moazzam Jah Ansari told reporters at the Central Police Office here on Thursday that the 20-year-old embroiderer had confessed to sexual assaults and murders.

Declaring the accused a serial killer, he said the resident ofSufald Dheri area had committed the crime on Sundays in the cantonment area.

Mr Ansari said the young man sexually assaulted the girls before killing them and dumping the bodies.

He said the accused raped and killed a 10-year-old girl in the Railway Colony area on July 3, sexually assaulted a six-year-old girl in Gulberg area on July 10 and raped and killed the seven-year-old girl in Kali Bari area on July 17 and that those crimes were committed within a five-six kilometres radius.

Mr Ansari said several policeteams were formed to trace and arrest the accused and they examined over 2,000 hours long CCTV footage, geo-fenced at least 10 places,obtained records of hundreds of phone calls and quizzed over 500 suspects.

He said the police took the 20-year-old into custody after carrying out detailed profiling of suspects.

The IGP said the police had trouble tracing the accused as he neither used mobile phone nor did he obtain computerised nationalidentity card.

He also said the accused didn`thave close friends.

Mr Ansari said following assaults on minor girls, the police also deployed plainclothesmen in bazaars, who, along with the CCTV footage, helped track down the accused. He said the DNA of the accused matched with that of his victim from Gulberg area.

The police chief said the first two assault cases provided investigators with leads and the breakthrough came from the Kali Bari case.

`This case was a challenge for us[police] but we successfully dealt with it,` he said.Mr Ansari said the Railway Colony girl had left home to buy grocery on July 3 but didn`t return, so the family began asearch for him and found her strangled with head injury.

He said another girl was found unconscious in Gulberg area on July 10 after being subjected to sexual assault.

The IGP said the Kali Bari girl`s body was found in a mosque on July 17 after she stepped out of her house to deliver launch to her grandfather.

Regarding targeted killing of police personnelin the province, he said both terrorist and criminal groups were involved in the attacks against police.

`Being on the forefront, the police are an easy target for such attacks,` he said.

Mr Ansari said that the police had identified the accused involved in the Wednesday night attack on police in Mattani area of Peshawar.

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Man arrested under parents` protection law – 29 Jul 2022

TAXILA: The first case under the Parents Protection Ordinance 2021 has been registered in the Fatehjang town of Attock on Thursday against a son for beating and misbehaving with his elderly parents.

My son was misbehaving with me and his mother and he beat us black and blue, the victim Ghulam Mohammad told police who arrested the son. Under the ordinance, evicting parents will be a punishable offence.

Those found guilty may face a prison term up to one year or fine, or both. Sub Divisional Police Officer Raja Fayyazul Haq told journalists that upon the complaint of the victim police arrested the suspects. Correspondent

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Woman shot, injured by robbers – 29 Jul 2022

ISLAMABAD: Robbers shot and injured a woman while cash and valuables were looted or stolen from 25 places in the capital, police said on Thursday.

Three gunmen held up Nighat Perveen at Koral Bridge and snatched cash and valuables from her.When the robbery victim used offensive words against the armed men, theyshotherandescaped.

In another incident, two persons booked a Bykea from Faizabad to KarachiCompany and after reaching near H-9 College they snatched the motorcycle, a mobile phone and Rs6,000 from the driver, Mohammad Yasir.

Robbers also looted a bike along with a mobile phone and Rs10,000 from Mohammad Zohaib and a motorcycle from Suglain on Islamabad Highway. Similarly, armed men robbed citizens of cash and valuables in different parts of the city.

Moreover, burglars stole seven tola gold ornaments, three LCDs and other items from the house of Akbar Azam and Rs2,880 and mobile phones worth Rs180,000 from the shop of Tariq Mehmood at Koral. The police said Rs250,000 were also snatched from Sher Afgan at a bus stop near G-10. Meanwhile, a pickup was stolen from Pholgran while seven motorcycles were lifted from PWD, Sharifabad, G-15, Ghouri Town and DHA.

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Two alleged rapists held – 29 Jul 2022

TAXILA: Two people who allegedly gang raped a woman in Fatehjang was arrested.

Sub Divisional Police Officer Raja Fayyazul Haq informed journalists that two men took her to a house located in a deserted area near a housing society and raped her.

Later, police carried out her medical examination which has confirmed the rape. Subsequently, a case was registered against the suspects who were arrested.

The victim went to the police herself to report the incident.

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Teenage girl gang-raped – 29 Jul 2022

NAROWAL: A 16-yearold girl was allegedly gangraped by two persons at her home in the neighbourhood Murghikhana on Wednesday evening.

The complainant, mother of the girl, told the police she went out with her husband at 8pm to buy medicines while her children were at home. Meanwhile, two locals broke into the house and gang-raped her daughter.

She said when they returned, the suspects were assaulting her. Seeing them, the suspects ned brandishing a sharp-edge instrument. Parents shifted the unconscious girl to the Narowal DistrictHeadquarters Hospital in a critical condition.

The Narowal City police registered a first information report on Thursday against the suspects and arrested them.

The police conducted the medical reports and DNA tests of the evidence of the incident.

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Man arrested for killing wife – 29 Jul 2022

Suspect tortured victim to death, pretended she had eloped

Investigations Police in Shahdara arrested a suspect who allegedly buried his wife after beating her to death with iron rods. The suspect alleged that she had eloped, in order to hide his crime.

SP Investigations Civil Lines Raza Tanveer said that the victim, Fauzia Bibi had married the suspect Liaquat Ali. The couple had four children together, however their relationship gradually soured. Earlier this week, the suspect beat Fauzia to death with iron rods and buried her body. To cover up her absence, he pronounced that she had eloped.

Further police investigations revealed that the suspect was lying. Police recovered the body, as well as other evidence and arrested Liaquat Ali.

SP Tanveer further added that Investigations Police Civil Lines arrested two suspects who would call citizens, impersonate policemen and extort money by threatening them.

The suspects would allegedly say that they were speaking from a police station and arrested their relatives in a rape or murder case. If they wanted them released, the victims were urged to send money to a given number.

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