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‘Honour and Violence: Gender, Power and Law in Southern Pakistan’ — A Book by Nafisa Shah

‘Honour and Violence: Gender, Power and Law in Southern Pakistan’ — A Book by Nafisa Shah

Admin The practice of karo kari allows family, especially fathers, brothers and sons, to take the lives of their daughters, sisters and mothers if they are accused of adultery. This volume examines the central position of karo kari in the social, political and juridical structures in Upper Sindh, Pakistan. Drawing connections between local contests over marriage and resources, Nafisa Shah unearths deep historical processes and power relations. In particular, she explores how the state justice system … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

ایک اور بلڈی سویلین

ایک اور بلڈی سویلین

تحریر: عماد ظفر محبوب واپڈا کا لائن مین تھا اور سرکاری فرائض کی انجام دہی کے سلسلے میں فوج کے ایک حاضر سروس میجر کے گھر کی بجلی کا کنکشن منقطع کرنے اس کے گھر پہنچا۔ میجر زاہد اس کے اس سنگین جرم پر شدید مشتعل ہو گیا اور واپڈا کے اسـں ملازم کو گولیاں مار کر ہلاک کر دیا۔ حبیب کیونکہ محض ایک معمولی سرکاری ملازم تھا اور ساتھ میں فقط ایک بلڈی سویلین اس … Read entire article »

Filed under: Army, Constitution, Justice, Law, Pak Tea House, Pakistan

Law and Disorder: Radicalization of the legal community

By Abdul majeed Abid: Greek philosopher Aristotle famously remarked “The law is reason unaffected by desire”. Going by that description, lawyers should be the most logical/reasonable people in a society. In context of Pakistan, lawyers have played an important role in both creation of Pakistan and evolution of society. Founder of Pakistan Mr Muhamad Ali Jinnah and national poet Allama Iqbal were both lawyers. Lawyers are also the most politicised section of the society. Every major party in Pakistan has its legal wings. A disturbing trend of increased religious intolerance has been witnessed in the last few years. One basic reason for this has been the increasd influence of student wings of right-wing parties in law colleges across the country. Even the historic lawyers’ movement was almost hi-jacked by the right wing elements … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion, Reviews

A.R Cornelius – The Islamic Catholic?

By AA Khalid ‘’Over the past twenty-five years, academics in Europe and the United States have written a great deal about the relationship between Islam and democracy, and between Islam and human rights. This scholarship often fails to acknowledge or take into account similar debates that occurred earlier during a period of decolonization. This article discusses the work of a Christian judge who served on the Supreme Court of Pakistan. This judge, A.R. Cornelius, was a famous Cambridge-educated legal liberal who courageously tried in the 1950s and 60s to protect human rights as Pakistan came under martial rule. Cornelius came to argue shockingly and controversially in the 1960s and 70s that Islamizing the law of the state not only permits the liberal rule of law to survive, but, under certain … Read entire article »

Filed under: human rights, Islam

Deciding the Raymond Davis Case—By Principles or Realpolitik Stakes?

By Dr. Niaz Murtaza In an earlier piece (Raymond Davis-Further thoughts) on the PTH, I looked mainly at the legal side of this case and argued that RD’s immunity depends on whether he is a consulate or embassy employee. In the first case, he does not have immunity. In the second case, he would still be liable for civil and admin jurisdiction in Pakistan though it is not clear what rights it will then give Pakistan over him. His actual status is complicated by the poor written communication between Pak and US prior to this incident. I also argued that both countries should form a committee of renowned international jurists (from both western countries and some Muslim countries like Turkey and Malaysia). Pak courts lack jurisdiction, knowledge and international credibility over immunity … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, USA

Herald exclusive: Law unto themselves

Police in Pakistan are known for being inefficient, corrupt and brutal. But when it comes to blasphemy cases they have behaved even more irresponsibly on a number of occasions, taking the law into their own hands and putting the accused to death without giving them the benefit of investigation or trial. This raises serious questions about the ability of the law and of law-enforcement mechanisms to take their course on an issue that inspires emotions as heated as blasphemy does. Or, to put it differently, there are two aspects to the debate on blasphemy laws: Are they effective as institutional tools to curb what is strictly a religious crime, and are they preventing people from dispensing mob and vigilante justice? The answer on both counts is no. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Another blow to Pakistan: Salmaan Taseer killed by extremism

Another blow to Pakistan: Salmaan Taseer killed by extremism

Raza Rumi Salmaan Taseer’s brutal murder at the hands of a security personnel is a cruel reminder of where we have landed ourselves: in a dark morass of irrationality lorded over by pernicious ideologies. He was a brave man and stood for a liberal, tolerant and progressive Pakistan where economic and political freedoms could be upheld. He has paid for his life for his bold stance on the blasphemy law and countering Talibanisation. He was our hope … Read entire article »

Filed under: Activism, Islamism, Jinnah, Pakistan

DAILY TIMES EDITORIAL: An idea whose time has come

If it were not so tragic, the case of a blasphemy-accused doctor would have made for comic reading. Reportedly, Dr Naushad Valiyani threw the business card of a medical representative “which had his full name, Muhammad Faizan”, in a dustbin. Mr Faizan then launched a blasphemy complaint against the doctor. The absurdity of the charges against Dr Valiyani exposes the nature of the draconian Blasphemy Law, which can be misused for any purpose under the sun. General Ziaul Haq left this country with a minefield in the shape of this law, which lends itself to abuse. The case of Dr Valiyani is just one of the many cases where the complainant is crossing all lines of common sense. ‘Muhammad’ is a popular name over the Muslim world. To say that … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Supreme Court's earlier judgement and the 18th amendment case

Faisal Naseem Chaudhry The 18th Amendment case is likely to conclude soon and it is quite probable (courtesy of remarks of the Honourable Judges) that the SC may strike down a constitutional amendment finding it contrary to Independence of Judiciary; in other words finding it contrary to the ‘Basic Structure of the Constitution’. Pasted below are some excerpts from a Five Member Bench Judgement of the SC delivered on 13 April 2005. The Judgement is known as Pakistan Lawyers Forum vs Federation of Pakistan and through this cluster of different petitions, the constitutionality of 17th Amendment was challenged before the SC. One of the grounds was that the 17th Amendment was violative of the Basic Structure of the constitution. As stated earlier, it was a Five Member bench and the then two … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Paved With Good Intentions

By Feisal H. Naqvi Most Pakistanis don’t know what Nepra is, let alone what Nepra does. This is a good thing for the Nepra people because otherwise there would be a mob right now outside their Islamabad offices, complete with pitchforks and burning staves. What most Pakistanis do know is that their biggest problem (apart from minor issues like rampant inflation, exploding jihadis and imploding cricket teams) is lack of electricity. What most Pakistanis also know is that there is no good reason for us not to have electricity. We have enough coal for the next 500 years and enough hydro-electric potential to meet our current needs three times over. Why then are we stuck in load-shedding land? … Read entire article »

Filed under: Law, Pakistan, public policy, Regulatory Affairs

Do Muslim Women Get a Fair Deal?

This is an incisive article sent by Ms Taji M which raises several intelligent and debatable points. Right now we are witnessing a debate on need for reform in religion. This article provides a woman’s perspective and argues that due to orthodox and literal interpretation of religion women in our society are not getting a fair deal. We expect healthy debate on this article. By Taji M I have a friend, university educated, upper class, stylish and religious but not an extremist way. She is a on the whole a very sensible person. Over the years we have debated religion extensively; I have more reformist thoughts and she is more mainstream. She is of the firm belief that present orthodox version of Islam offers the best position for Muslim women; in one … Read entire article »

Filed under: human rights, Islam, Pakistan, Religion, Women

Saving the Capital

Saving the Capital

Raza Rumi The recent decision of the Supreme Court to order closure of a multinational food chain restaurant in Islamabad is path-breaking It has become a cliché to praise the Supreme Court of Pakistan these days. Clichéd, because many partisan agendas find resonance within the all-embracing spectrum of judicial activism. Those who have been critical of judges turning into activists must rethink their misgivings. While the dangers of such blanket approval of the workings of a state … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islamabad, Nature, Pakistan, public policy, Rights

Mass madness over the internet

Ahmed Nadeem has sent another exclusive contribution for PTH. We are posting it to show that a large number of people are enraged at curtailing the freedom to use the internet. We do not endorse all the views here but would like to give airtime to all views. Raza Rumi There is a ‘mass madness’ ranging from TV talk shows to headlines of News Papers and debate on internet. Charged workers of religious organisations are out in streets of Pakistan. As Malaysian are relatively more religious people as compared to Pakistani’s and share the same Prophet. I was thinking that today country would be choked like Pakistan from electronic blackout to burning shopping malls and McDonalds. Especially, the State of my work my worst as it is currently being ruled by … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Highlights of the 18th Constitutional Amendment

Posted by Raza Rumi * Amendment to Article 6 seeks to pre-empt military coups in future * Article 58(2b) to be repealed, substituted with ‘Dissolution of National Assembly’ * President may dissolve NA in case no-confidence vote passed against PM * Total strength of cabinet should not exceed 11% of total membership of parliament * Governor should be a resident and registered voter of his/her province, he/she would be appointed by president on prime minister’s advice * Provinces required by law to establish local government systems, devolve political, administrative and financial responsibility and authority to elected representatives * PM to be chairperson of CCI, members to include CMs, 3 members from federal govt * Amendment to Article 157 says federal government must consult provincial government before installing hydroelectric power stations in any province * PM to forward three names … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

A Giant Leap Forward for Pakistan!!

Posted by Raza Rumi What an incredible achievement by Pakistan’s politicians, comparable to the historic national consensus reached in 1973 under the leadership of Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto when Pakistan’s Islamic, Federal and democratic constitution was voted in. Now 37-years after that, Pakistan’s politicians have done the entire nation proud once again, this time under the leadership of President Zardari and Prime Minister Gilani, by adopting 18th Amendment to the same Constitution by the same or higher degree of consensus (when all political parties, small or big, provincial or national, bar none) have come together. These leaders have decided to do away the massive damage done to the constitution (and the national fabric) by military dictators over the years – by Zia and Musharraf. In one sweeping motion, with more … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan