Pakistan’s Rights body denounces move to amend Army Act

November 14th, 2007 - 8:16 am ICT by admin  
Any suggestion for an increase in the intelligence agencies’ powers is like a slap in the nation’s face, HRCP chairperson Asma Jahangir said in a statement.

The HRCP said that the havoc the intelligence agencies have wrought has given rise to a unanimous public demand for an end to their illegal activities and a drastic curtailment of whatever legal functions they have been assigned.

The legalisation of the intelligence agencies’ practice of picking up and detaining citizens will gravely undermine the rule of the law, the commission said, adding that it will increase and justify the cases of disappearance of which the Supreme Court has been seized of nearly a year.

Terming the reported move to amend the Army Act to provide for additional grounds for court martial of civilian offenders or suspects, as even more sinister, it said, this will amount to creation of summary military courts against which the Supreme Court had issued a firm bar some years ago.

The statement said the court martial proceedings against civilians can only be termed state terrorism by abuse of law, the Dawn reported.

“For several days reports of government moves to clip citizens’ right to due protection of law have been appearing in the press,” it said, adding that now that the government’s designs have been confirmed by the Attorney-General, the proposed assault on the rights of the people must be unreservedly condemned.

“What is now being proposed is an extremely retrogressive measure that will reduce Pakistan to a land without the umbrella of law. The proposed move must be given up and efforts made to combat terrorism without abandoning justice and good sense,” the statement said. (ANI)

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in World |