KARACHI: Activists of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and civil society held demonstration to call for putting an end to capital punishment on the eve of October 10 World Day against the death penalty.
The protest led by renowned HRCP activist Akhtar Baloch and PFUJ leader Khurshed Abbasi, Asad Iqbal, Nida Palwasha and others holding banners and placards chanted slogans of stop execution, stop death penalty etc here before the Karachi Press Club.
Speaking to gathering, the HRCP activists said highlighted that in present circumstances, it is imperative to immediately halt executions and restore the moratorium to move towards abolition of the death penalty in Pakistan.
The HRCP activists disclosed that Pakistan is the top ranking in the executions of the world over, which the data shows since resuming executions in December 2014 Pakistan hanged 425 individuals, while 33 convicts in 2015 alone they said.
They said courts have continued to award capital punishment to suspects at a rapid rate, as many as 225 individual were sentenced in 2014 and 411 in 2015 report said. The number of convictions had already reached 301 by the end of September 2016.
HRCP coordinator told that the authorities have decided to put execution of death sentences convicts at the top of the 20th point of National Action Plan (NAP), so that it is essential to assess, if the objectives for resumption of executions have been achieved.
HRCP leaders have expressed grave concern over the rising denial of fair trial and due process rights in trial by military court in a situation, added due to the critical and well-documented deficiencies of the law and administration of justice in Pakistan. The death penalty allows for very high probability of miscarriage of justice, which is unacceptable in any civilized society.
HRCP activists claimed that the religion has often invoked to justify capital punishment, yet the fact is that no more than a couple of 27 death penalty offences on the statute books in Pakistan are mandated by religion. Capital punishment smack of retributive justice from ancient times that should have no place in modern society they said.
They demanded of the investigation methods’ of the police and chronic corruption also add to the troubles of those accused of death penalty offences at a serious disadvantage. The system of justice is loaded against the poor and the lack of financial means puts those accused of death penalty offences at serious drawback.