HRCP observes Int’l Day against Torture

ISLAMABAD – Human Rights Commission Pakistan (HRCP) organized meeting on Saturday to mark the International Day against Torture.

The meeting was chaired by HRCP Council Member Nasreen Azhar. The Parliamentarians Commission for Human Rights (PCHR) Executive Director Shafique Chaudhry said that torture was absolutely prohibited in international law.

Pakistan is a state party to various human rights instruments, which explicitly ban torture and call for its absolute prohibition in all its forms and in all circumstances. Article 14 of the Constitution of Pakistan also condemns torture for purposes of extraction of evidence.

He regretted that although Pakistan had ratified the UN Convention against Torture (CAT) six years ago but there was till date no domestic legislation that criminalizes torture.

Pakistan is state party to various human rights instruments, which explicitly ban torture and call for its absolute prohibition in all its forms

In 2021 the torture and custodial death (Prevention and Punishment) Bill presented by Senator Sherry Rehman was passed by the Upper House, but it has yet to be taken up in the National Assembly, even though the practice of torture is deeply entrenched not only in the policing system but also in our whole law enforcing system.

HRCP Council Member Farhatullah Babar said that the prohibition of torture is absolute under all circumstances.

Victims of torture have the right to compensation and rehabilitation. All incidents of torture must be investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice. In an analysis of the gaps in the country’s criminal justice system it was clarified that in order to qualify as “Torture” in the legal sense the act of pain must be inflicted by a public official directly or at the behest of, or with the consent of a public official.

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