UN panel criticises Pakistan’s military courts

The committee expressed concern over the very broad powers given to the army to detain people suspected of involvement in terrorist activities without charge or judicial supervision

GN Bureau | May 16, 2017


#UN Panel   #Kulbhushan Jadhav   #Pakistan   #Kulbhushan Jadhav Case  


A UN report has come down heavily on Pakistan’s military courts, one of which had awarded death sentence to Kulbhushan Jadhav.
India and Pakistan on Monday were pitted against each other at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the case of Jadhav, a former Indian naval officer found guilty by the military court of being an Indian spy. India has strongly denied the claims.

United Nations Committee against Torture said that the committee is seriously concerned at reports that members of the State party’s military forces; intelligence forces, such as the Inter-Service Intelligence agency; and paramilitary forces, such as the Frontier Corps and the Pakistan Rangers, have been implicated in a significant number of cases of extra-judicial executions involving torture and enforced disappearances.

The committee is also concerned about the possibility that the State party’s laws provide for retroactive immunity for torture by members of the military and paramilitary forces, under provisions of the Actions in Aid of Civil Power Regulation of 2011, for events after February 2008; as well as the amendment to the Army Act of 2015 which grants all personnel associated with military courts complete retrospective immunity from prosecution for actions taken in “good faith”.

The committee is also concerned by the exclusive jurisdiction of the military justice system over soldiers accused of offences against civilians. It regrets that the State party provided no information suggesting that members of the military, intelligence services, or paramilitary forces have been prosecuted and punished for acts amounting to torture as defined by the Convention.

The report said that the committee is seriously concerned that the State party has authorized military courts to try civilians for terrorism-related offences, most recently in the 23rd amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan, approved in 2017, particularly in view of the lack of independence of military court judges, which are within the military hierarchy, and practices of such courts including holding closed trials.

The committee is also concerned by the very broad powers given to the Army to detain people suspected of involvement in terrorist activities without charge or judicial supervision in internment centres under the Actions in Aid of Civil Power regulations 2011.

It said: “End the resort to military courts for terrorism related prosecutions, transfer criminal cases against civilians from military courts to civilian courts and provide the opportunity for appeal in civilian courts of cases involving civilians already adjudicated under military jurisdiction.”

Read: UN committee’s observations on Pakistan
 

Comments

 

Other News

Dharma as the original Idea of India

Dharma: Hinduism and Religions in India By Chaturvedi Badrinath Edited by Tulsi Badrinath Penguin, 194+ xiii pages, Rs 499 How to live: That is the most fundamental question of human existence.

Prakash Ambedkar on why he wants other parties to mention the candidates’ community

Prakash Ambedkar, grandson of Dr BR Ambedkar and popularly known as Balasaheb Ambedkar, heads the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA). The three-time MP founded this new political party last year with a vision of Ambedkarism, secularism, socialism and progressivism. The VBA, registered this year before the Lo

Maharashtra, Haryana polls: parties spent Rs 280.72 crore on publicity

Political parties that contested the Maharashtra and Haryana assembly elections in 2014 spent the largest part of their expenses, Rs 280.72 crore (77.35 percent), on publicity, shows an analysis by the National Election Watch (NEW). This was followed by Rs 41.40 crore on travel expenses, Rs 22.59 crore on

Why Modi-Xi informal summit in Mamallapuram is important

Barely four days are left for Chinese president Xi Jinping to land in Mamallapuram (or Mahabalipuram) for an informal summit with prime minister Narendra Modi. While official confirmation is still awaited at the time of writing, the two leaders are expected to meet in this Tamil Nadu town known for its tem

Aarey tree cutting: Supreme court orders status quo

Citizen protesters had some relief on Monday as the Supreme Court ordered a status quo pm the cutting of trees in Aarey forests of Mumbai to build a Metro Rail shed. The apex court’s forest bench will hear the matter in detail on October 21 to find out if the selected site falls in the

Single-use plastic ban: Govt to focus on awareness

After prime minister Narendra Modi in his independence day address to the nation referred to the environmental harm caused by single-use plastic, the government was widely expected to come out with a formal ban on the substance from October 2, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. There has been n



Current Issue

Current Issue

Video

CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter