Injustice Grips Pakistani Prisons as Voices Go Unheard

student - The News Toay - TNT


Within the depths of Pakistani prisons, a silent tragedy unfolds, with thousands of destitute souls finding themselves locked away, their voices silenced by a justice system that fails to provide the support they desperately need.


These individuals, unable to afford the services of a lawyer, are appointed public defenders by the jail or the court. However, once they sign the power of attorney, these defenders seem to fade into the shadows, leaving their clients vulnerable and unheard.

As these detainees and extradited persons make their appearances in court, they face an all-too-familiar scene: the absence of government lawyers. Regrettably, the court turns a blind eye to this issue, allowing the wheels of justice to grind to a halt.

Moreover, the cases of countless individuals imprisoned for years on end remain pending within the confines of Pakistani jails. Whenever these prisoners are brought to court, they are met with a disheartening absence of judges, attorneys, and witnesses.

The very foundations of justice tremble under the weight of these inadequacies. To add insult to injury, if a public prosecutor does take up a person’s case, they may brazenly demand illegal fees, trapping the impoverished behind bars. Failure to pay these exorbitant sums leads to continued imprisonment, perpetuating an unjust cycle of suffering.

Additionally, the police, responsible for warrant appearances, often fail to show up in court, further compounding the issues plaguing the justice system. It is no wonder, then, that faith in the Pakistani judiciary system has eroded among the people. The disillusionment runs deep, as judges merely pay visits to prisons to fulfill formalities, while true justice remains elusive.

To rectify this disheartening state of affairs, concrete and practical steps must be taken. First and foremost, the installation of CCTV cameras throughout all prisons, meticulously monitored by the judiciary, is imperative. By shedding light on every nook and cranny, these cameras will act as guardians of truth, ensuring accountability and deterring illicit activities.

In conjunction with this measure, all power of attorney or Wakalat Nama documents should be registered with the Bar Council and the relevant session judge’s office. This will serve as a safeguard against fraud and protect inmates from being preyed upon by unscrupulous individuals seeking exorbitant fees.

Moreover, it is essential that prison rules be diligently imparted to all inmates, enlightening them about their inherent rights within the confines of their cells. No form of corporal punishment should be tolerated within these walls, as the dignity and humanity of every individual must be upheld.

By implementing these critical steps, we can forge a path toward a brighter future, where the marginalized and helpless within our society find solace and support. Let us join hands, government and NGOs alike, to usher in a new era of compassion and justice, where every individual, regardless of their circumstances, is treated with fairness and respect. Together, we can ensure a higher standard of living for those who have long been denied their rights.

(The writer is a senior journalist. He can be reached at


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