Top Stories

Rs20,000 minimum wage based on 14% hike in inflation: official

May 6th, 2021; By Rehan Piracha; LAHORE; The Punjab government has announced raising minimum monthly wage to 20,000 but labour rights activists point out that lack of implementation mechanism has left out millions of workers being paid the bare minimum under the law.

انسانی حقوق کمیشن کی سالانہ رپورٹ: 2020 آزادی اظہار اور معیشیت کے لئےمشکل رہا

مئی ٥ ٢٠٢١; اسٹاف رپورٹ; لاہور; انسانی حقوق کمیشن نے اپنی سالانہ رپورٹ براۓ سنہ 2020 کوجاری کر دیا ہے. رپورٹ میں بتایا گیا ہے کے پچھلے سال ملک میں عورتوں اور بچوں پر تشدد کے کسیز میں اضافہ ہوا جب کہ صحافت اور آزادی اظہار رائے پر بھی مزید قدغنیں بھی لگائی گی.

Pakistan’s human rights situation worsened during the pandemic, finds HRCP

May 5th, 2021; Staff Report; LAHORE; In its flagship report, the HRCP found that the COVID1-9 pandemic had aggravated Human Rights violations in Pakistan, and urged the government to deliver the rights and freedoms legally and constitutionally entitled to the people of Pakistan.

پاکستان کا جی-ایس-پی پلس سٹیٹس ختم کرنے کا حتمی فیصلہ نہیں ہوا: پاکستان میں یورپ کی سفیر

مئی ٦ ٢٠٢١; اسٹاف رپورٹ; لاہور; پاکستان میں یورپی یونین کی سفیر اینڈرولا کامینارا نے صحافی منیزۓ جہانگیر کو دیے گئے ایک انٹرویو میں وضاحت کی ہے کہ پاکستان کا جی-ایس-پی پلس سٹیٹس ختم کرنے کا ابھی تک کوئی حتمی فیصلہ نہیں کیا گیا-

No decision to revoke Pakistan’s GSP+ status: EU Ambassador

May 6th, 2021; Staff Report; LAHORE; Ambassador of the EU to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara clarified that the European Parliament's resolution to review Pakistan's GSP+ status is not a decision to go ahead with it.

Rights Watch

Rights Watch | 6th May 2021

A Judicial Magistrate (East) on Wednesday granted police three-day custody of a suspect accused of sexually assaulting a ten-year-old girl in Karachi's Essa Nagri neighbourhood on Tuesday. For more news on violence against women and children, keep reading.

Rights Watch | 3rd May 2021

One Irfan Jatoi, a resident of Pir Usman Shah village in Larkana, on Friday gunned down his two unmarried sisters Maqsooda (25) and Raheela (23). Police suspect Jatoi may have committed the murders in the name of so-called 'honour'. For more news on gender-based violence, keep reading.

Rights Watch | 30th April 2021

Nowshera police on Thursday arrested Mufti Sardar Ali Haqqani for delivering a 'provocative' speech against women educators, doctors and nurses in a video that went viral on social media. He was granted bail by a judicial magistrate on submitting two surety bonds. For more news on human rights, keep reading.

Our Stories

Journalism for Human Rights in Pakistan. Most popular stories you must read today!

No decision to revoke Pakistan’s GSP+ status: EU Ambassador

May 6th, 2021; Staff Report; LAHORE; Ambassador of the EU to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara clarified that the European Parliament's resolution to review Pakistan's GSP+ status is not a decision to go ahead with it.

Rs20,000 minimum wage based on 14% hike in inflation: official

May 6th, 2021; By Rehan Piracha; LAHORE; The Punjab government has announced raising minimum monthly wage to 20,000 but labour rights activists point out that lack of implementation mechanism has left out millions of workers being paid the bare minimum under the law.

انسانی حقوق کمیشن کی سالانہ رپورٹ: 2020 آزادی اظہار اور معیشیت کے لئےمشکل رہا

مئی ٥ ٢٠٢١; اسٹاف رپورٹ; لاہور; انسانی حقوق کمیشن نے اپنی سالانہ رپورٹ براۓ سنہ 2020 کوجاری کر دیا ہے. رپورٹ میں بتایا گیا ہے کے پچھلے سال ملک میں عورتوں اور بچوں پر تشدد کے کسیز میں اضافہ ہوا جب کہ صحافت اور آزادی اظہار رائے پر بھی مزید قدغنیں بھی لگائی گی.

Pakistan’s human rights situation worsened during the pandemic, finds HRCP

May 5th, 2021; Staff Report; LAHORE; In its flagship report, the HRCP found that the COVID1-9 pandemic had aggravated Human Rights violations in Pakistan, and urged the government to deliver the rights and freedoms legally and constitutionally entitled to the people of Pakistan.

UNHRC expresses grave concern over enforced disappearances of Sindhi minorities

May 5th, 2021; By Asra Haque; LAHORE; The UNHRC has expressed its concern regarding a 'pattern' of enforced disappearances of minorities and political and rights activists in Sindh. The letter comes as Pakistan draws international ire over its gross Human Rights violations.

وزیراعظم کا یورپی یونین کے تحفظات دور کرنے کا عندیہ

مئی ٤ ٢٠٢١; تحریر: ریحان پراچہ; لاہور; وزیراعظم عمران خان نے عندیہ دیا ہے کہ پاکستان ختم نبوت کے قانون پر سمجھوتہ نہیں کرے گا لیکن یورپی یونین کے تحفظات دور کرے گا جس کا احاطہ حالیہ یورپی پارلیمان کی قرار داد میں کیا گی

Fear persists in Lahore hospital despite averting communal clash

May 4th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; Fear of a communal clash at Lahore's mental institute was averted after successful talks between Muslim and Christian staffers, however the situation remains tense as Christian staffers fear reprisal.

Hope in sight as Haseeba Qambrani’s cousin returns home

May 4th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; Activist Haseeba Qambrani has expressed joy at the return of her cousin Hizbullah Qambrani. She hopes that other Missing Persons across Pakistan including her brother Hassan Qambrani will also return soon.

پاکستان: ایک سال میں دس صحافی قتل ، کسی ملزم کو سزا نہ ہو پائی

مئی ٣ ٢٠٢١; تحریر: ریحان پراچہ; لاہور; جنوری 2020 سے اپریل 2021 کے عرصہ میں پاکستان میں دس صحافیوں کا قتل ہوا جبکہ دیگرصحافیوں کو ڈیڑھ سو کے قریب پر تشدّد واقعیات کا سامنا کرنا پڑا

A Tale of Media Censorship & Online Harassment

May 3rd, 2021; By Shahid Afzal Khan; LAHORE; This Press Freedom Day Voicepk pays tribute to the independent Pakistani journalists who brave overwhelming odds to keep the public informed.

PEMRA has become a tool of censorship, must be disbanded, assert senior journalists.

April 29th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; PEMRA has issued a notification to Media outlets advising them not to rely on “Official Briefings” alone while reporting on Government meetings. The advisory has been slammed by senior journalists who have demanded that the body be disbanded

Due process of law not being followed in Javed Latif case say lawyers

April 28th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; PML-N leader Javed Latif was handed over to the police on a five-day physical remand today by a local court in Lahore but legal experts assert that due process of the law was not followed while registering this case.

COVID-19 WATCH

COVID Watch | 31st March 2021

28 million AstraZeneca vaccine doses manufactured by India under the WHO's COVAX programme have yet to leave the country due to India’s new export restrictions owing to a surge in national cases. For more stories on the pandemic situation, keep reading.

COVID Watch | 30th March 2021

The NCOC revealed on Monday that 26 cities of Punjab, Peshawar and Azad Kashmir reported a case positivity rate of over 8%. Meanwhile 100 patients reportedly succumbed to the novel coronavirus disease. An overall positivity rate of 8.83% was recorded with 4,084 fresh infections. For more, keep reading.

In Focus

Journalism for Human Rights in Pakistan. Most popular stories you must read today!

A right to education, without discrimination

April 27th, 2021; By Suneel Malik; LAHORE; "The matter of religious inclusivity in the SNC has been presented in public as a religious issue in order to create confusion and generate controversy, despite the fact that in actuality it deals with the curricula, and its provisions relating to basic human rights protected under the Constitution," writes Suneel Malik.

“Cancel your protest or else,” Punjab police tells detained farmers’ leader

February 9th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; Farmers’ Leader, Chaudhry Anwar was detained inside a police van in Lahore for 12 hrs. Senior police officials threatened him with severe consequences if he fails to call off a farmers’ protest scheduled for the end of this month.

ATC grants police custody of social activist Muhammad Ismail for 3 days

February 3rd, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Peshawar granted to police, three-day physical custody of arrested social activist Professor Muhammad Ismail, a focal person of the Pakistan NGOs Forum. Yesterday the ATC had rejected Prof. Ismail’s pre-arrest bail plea in a “terror financing case” registered against him by the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) following which he was handcuffed and taken into custody by the CTD from the court’s premise.  

Carrying on the legacy of the courageous Asma Jahangir

January 27th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; The Asma Jahangir Legal Aid Cell continues the legacy of upholding principles of human rights and the rule of law of its late founder Asma Jahangir as the nation marked the sixty-ninth birth anniversary of the human rights icon.

Allegedly abducted by the police over 2 months ago, the whereabouts of a Sanghar villager remains unknown

January 24th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; Sanghar resident Abdul Sattar Awan has been missing for over 2 months. In a petition filed before the Sindh High Court his brother claims that Sattar was abducted by the police. Police has failed to produce Sattar despite High Court's orders.

Women lawmakers agree on increasing marriage age for girls in Punjab

January 14th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; Lawmakers from both sides of the Punjab Assembly have joined hands to end the menace of child marriages by increasing the age of marriage to 18 years for girls in Punjab and make CNICs a mandatory document to solemnize the marriage.

A “Judicial Crusade” against ‘ENFORCED DISAPPEARANCES’

January 13th, 2021; Staff Reporter; LAHORE; Summons, fines & threat of arrests in 2021 has seen a series of actions taken by the higher courts against the govt's inability to recover victims of enforced disappearance.

IHC hears petition seeking ban on Netflix

January 6th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz; LAHORE; In a petition filed before the IHC petitioner, Tariq Asad asserts that if Netflix fails to remove the 'sacrilegious' movie the website should be banned in the country altogether- much like the Youtube Ban of 2012.

Life in the Time of COVID

The year has ended but COVID is still around. Will dealing with an uncertain future be the new normal in 2021? Voicepk.net brings to you the stories of five working women from across Pakistan, who have lost their livelihood due to the global pandemic, but not their strength.

Editorials

Is Nawaz’s battle cry for salvation or civilian supremacy

October 17th, 2020; By Munizae Jahangir; LAHORE; In an unprecedented first, Punjab’s most popular leader called out a sitting army head, Qamar Bajwa & ISI Chief General Faiz on meddling in politics, kidnapping journalists, & pressurizing the judiciary

Culture of Silence

Spotlight, the 2015 Academy Award winning motion picture, brought to global attention the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston sex abuse scandal of 2002. The film was based on factual events, showing how a group of reporters ...

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Prisoner of Conscience: Baba Jan visits AGHS

March 24th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz & Hassan Raza; LAHORE; Baba Jan visited the office of the late Asma Jahangir to offer his condolences and thank his allies for standing with him throughout the nine years he had spent incarcerated as a prisoner of conscience.

Farooq Maududi: What Pakistan Day actually means

March 23rd, 2021; By Asra Haque; LAHORE; On Pakistan Day, Farooq Maududi narrates an alternate history of the origins of civil-military relations and the tragedy of Partition

President urges women to avail govt loan schemes

President Dr Arif Alvi has urged women in the country to take advantage of various loan schemes initiated by the federal government for their economic empowerment, regretting that only five percent of the funds available to female entrepreneurs have been availed due to lack of awareness.

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Feature Articles

A right to education, without discrimination

April 27th, 2021; By Suneel Malik; LAHORE; "The matter of religious inclusivity in the SNC has been presented in public as a religious issue in order to create confusion and generate controversy, despite the fact that in actuality it deals with the curricula, and its provisions relating to basic human rights protected under the Constitution," writes Suneel Malik.

The TTP Timeline in Balochistan

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has been flexing its muscles for a long time in Balochistan now. Historically speaking the TTP has always operated in the tribal areas in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KP) especially along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border area.  But now, their presence in Balochistan has gained a strong foothold.

‘At least a million children on Punjab’s streets’

April 14th, 2021; By Rehan Piracha; LAHORE; There are close to a million street children in cities across Punjab, says Sarah Ahmad, chairperson of the Punjab Child Protection and Welfare Bureau, announcing a renewed push against child beggary during Ramzan.

Workers' Right

Sysiphus Wept: Labouring away to Oblivion

May 1st, 2021; By Asra Haque, Hamid Riaz & Hassan Raza; LAHORE, CHUNGI AMAR SADHU; On International Workers Day, Voicepk.net brings you the stories of four women of the slums of the second largest city of Pakistan, Lahore.

I lost three sons, says father of Shangla slain miners

April 15th, 2021; By Umar Bacha; SHANGLA; Voicepk.net narrates the tragedy of Wazeer Rehman, whose three sons were among the 16 Shangla missing coalminers.

Family accuses police of partiality in disabled woman’s rape case

April 6th, 2021; By Zeenat Shehzadi; FAISALABAD; A woman with speech and hearing disability has been allegedly gang-raped in Bhowana tehsil while the suspects have obtained pre-arrest bail in the case.

Mine collapses killed 45 Baluchistan miners in last three months

March 21st, 2021; By Asim Ahmed Khan; QUETTA; The contract system is the primary evil plaguing the mining sector of our country. Government bodies that are supposed to protect us do not take any interest in the mines. The Mines Secretariat is a completely defunct body, says Abdul Sattar, the Central Chairman Pakistan Mines Labor Federation.

Press Releases

WAF denounces hate campaign against Aurat March

March 12th, 2021; By Staff Reporter; LAHORE; WAF registered a strong condemnation of an online hate campaign vilifying Aurat March & Aurat Azadi March as an 'anti-Islam foreign-funded agenda'.

PBC, PHCBA call for removing bar on Qazi Faez Isa

February 16th, 2021; By Staff reporter; LAHORE; The Pakistan Bar Council and the Peshawar High Court Bar Association have urged the Supreme Court to review its order of barring Justice Qazi Faez Isa from hearing cases concerning Prime Minister Imran Khan.

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Legal Issues

Due process of law not being followed in Javed Latif case say lawyers

April 28th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; PML-N leader Javed Latif was handed over to the police on a five-day physical remand today by a local court in Lahore but legal experts assert that due process of the law was not followed while registering this case.

Due process of law not being followed in Javed Latif case say lawyers

April 28th, 2021; By Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; PML-N leader Javed Latif was handed over to the police on a five-day physical remand today by a local court in Lahore but legal experts assert that due process of the law was not followed while registering this case.

SC accepts Qazi Faez Isa’s review petitions, PBC hails verdict

April 26th,2021; By Rehan Piracha & Ahmed Saeed; LAHORE; In a majority verdict of 6 against 4, the Supreme Court on Monday accepted Justice Qazi Faez Isa's review petitions as Pakistan Bar Council calls for the resignation of federal law minister

Ordinances meant to be passed as act of parliament instead get extension

April 17th, 2021; By Ahmad Saeed; LAHORE; The National assembly has extended the two anti-rape ordinances for a further period of 120 days. The opposition has criticised the govt for not tabling such important matters as a bill before parliament.

پنجاب فوڈ اتھارٹی کا ریسٹورنٹ کو سیل کرنے کا اختیار غیر قانونی قرار: سپریم کورٹ

تحریر: احمد سعید; لاہور; سپریم کورٹ نے پنجاب فوڈ اتھارٹی کے فوڈ سیکورٹی آفیسرز کے کسی بھی دکان یا ریسٹورنٹ کو سیل کرنےکے عمل کو غیر آئینی قرار دیتے ہوئے اتھارٹی کے یسٹورنٹس یا دکانوں کو سیل کرنے کے اختیار کو کالعدم قرار دے دیا.

Freedom Of Expression

پاکستان: ایک سال میں دس صحافی قتل ، کسی ملزم کو سزا نہ ہو پائی

مئی ٣ ٢٠٢١; تحریر: ریحان پراچہ; لاہور; جنوری 2020 سے اپریل 2021 کے عرصہ میں پاکستان میں دس صحافیوں کا قتل ہوا جبکہ دیگرصحافیوں کو ڈیڑھ سو کے قریب پر تشدّد واقعیات کا سامنا کرنا پڑا

A Tale of Media Censorship & Online Harassment

May 3rd, 2021; By Shahid Afzal Khan; LAHORE; This Press Freedom Day Voicepk pays tribute to the independent Pakistani journalists who brave overwhelming odds to keep the public informed.

International Stories

وزیراعظم کا یورپی یونین کے تحفظات دور کرنے کا عندیہ

مئی ٤ ٢٠٢١; تحریر: ریحان پراچہ; لاہور; وزیراعظم عمران خان نے عندیہ دیا ہے کہ پاکستان ختم نبوت کے قانون پر سمجھوتہ نہیں کرے گا لیکن یورپی یونین کے تحفظات دور کرے گا جس کا احاطہ حالیہ یورپی پارلیمان کی قرار داد میں کیا گی

UNDP highlights glaring economic inequality in the country

April 20th, 2021; Staff Report; LAHORE; According to the 'National Human Rights Development' report released by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), at least six percent of Pakistan’s gross domestic product (GDP) is handed over to the elite class in the form of direct or indirect privileges.

India’s new laws are discriminating against Kashmiris: UN experts

April 17th, 2021; By Rehan Piracha; LAHORE; India’s illegal annexation of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir and imposition of new laws in the disputed territory discriminate against Muslim and other minorities in employment and land ownership, UN human rights expert stated in a letter to New Delhi in February.

‘LoC ceasefire commendable, but may not lead to full diplomatic ties’

Foreign policy experts say the recent ceasefire may not lead to full restoration of trade and diplomatic relationship between India and Pakistan but is an opportunity to build up trust between both governments

SAHR pays tribute to Kamran Arif

South Asians for Human Rights (SAHR) has praised late Kamran Arif’s consistent contribution towards the protection and promotion of human rights, democratic values and peace in the South Asian region.

Afghan peace process in no jeopardy despite Taliban statement: experts

March 30th, 2021; By Rehan Piracha; LAHORE; Experts say the peace process in Afghanistan is no danger despite recent statements by the United States and the Taliban over meeting the American troops withdrawal deadline from the war-ravaged country under the Doha peace accord.

MYANMAR CRACKDOWN: “They can get us anytime”

March 10th, 2021; By Hamid Riaz & Xari Jalil; LAHORE; They live in fear, even as they a pushback against the brutalities of the military junta. Myanmar's situation is slowly worsening as more and more people join a civil disobedience movt and face a relentless crackdown.

UN experts laud Pakistan for commuting death sentences of mentally ill inmates.

February 19th, 2021; By Staff Reporter; LAHORE; United Nations’ experts on human rights have lauded Pakistan’s Supreme Court for commuting the death sentence of three mentally challenged inmates. The body has also called upon judiciaries worldwide to follow the example set by the SC of Pakistan.