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196 Hudood cases reported in four months

KARACHI, May 10, 2005: Despite the attempts of successive governments to resolve the controversy surrounding the Hudood Ordinances, the Madadgaar database cell reports that 82 women and 114 men have been arrested, convicted or acquitted under these in the first four months of the current year.

The government is urged to immediately repeal the discriminatory laws that severely negate the promotion of Human Rights in the country. The Lahore High Court has recently ruled that video footage is inadmissible to prove commission of the offence of Zina under the Hudood Ordinance. Introduced by President Zia-ul-Haq in 1979, the Hudood Ordinance’s administrative and procedural methods have only exacerbated the prevailing societal oppression of women.

From the 196 monitored Hudood Ordinance cases, 80 were reported in the press in January, 73 in February, 14 in March and 29 in April.194 cases fell under the controversial Zina Ordinance, with one reported offence of Qazf and one offence against property.The provincial breakdown of the reported cases reveals that just two were reported from the NWFP, 11 from Balochistan, 77 from Sindh, and a staggering 106 from the Punjab.

Fifty-three cases were reported from Karachi alone, 14 each from Lahore and Multan, and 16 from Khairpur. Of the reported cases 25 defendants charged under the Hudood Ordinance were acquitted by the judiciary, three were given life imprisonment, and in one case, lashes plus imprisonment were meted out.

The president, LHRLA Zia Awan, strongly urged the government to take proactive steps for the repeal of laws adding that time was ripe for the President of Pakistan to fulfil his commitment to promoting enlightened moderation by calling for the immediate repeal of the discriminatory law.

Source: The News

Date:5/10/2005

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