Rights Watch | 07th July 2020

Rights Watch

Woman Set on Fire for Honour

Syed Bilal Hussain Shah of Sarai Saleh village of district Haripur in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has accused his in-laws of setting his wife on fire and killing her for honour. Shah and his wife had contracted a court marriage in August 2019 against the wishes of the bride’s parents. However, his in-laws reached out to the couple under the pretext of wanting to hold a proper marriage to “save face” among their peers. Shah was later barred from meeting his wife, although the two remained in contact. Prior to her death, Shah’s wife had mentioned to him that her parents had become hostile toward her.

On July 2, Shah was informed by his in-laws that his wife had died in a fire caused by a gas leak, however, Shah alleged that she had been murdered for honour as she was the only one to have suffered any burns in the supposed accident. According to an initial autopsy report, the victim suffered 100% burns – samples have been dispatched to a forensic laboratory.

Shah has nominated his mother-in-law and brother-in-law in his complaint, however, no FIR has yet been registered.

Child Beaten for Demanding Dues

A minor boy was beaten with an iron rod by his employers in Gujjarpura in Lahore for demanding two-months’ salary. The child, hailing from an impoverished family, suffered a fractured arm from the beating.

Man Held for Child Pornography

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Monday, July 6, arrested one Younus Jatt of Samanabad, Punjab, for producing child pornography and using the videos to blackmail the victims’ families. The FIA recovered hundreds of videos from the suspect’s residence in the Fatehabad area of Lahore during the arrest.

Temple Construction in Limbo

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has reserved its verdict on two petitions filed against the construction of a Hindu temple in Islamabad’s Sector H-9 till Tuesday, July 7. Around 4 canals of land were allotted for the construction of the temple in 2017, to be supervised by the Ministry of Religious Affairs, however, the plot was subsequently handed over to the Islamabad Hindu Panchayat in 2018.

Due to a projected construction cost of Rs. 100 million, the matter was referred to the Prime Minister who in turn referred it to the Council of Islamic Ideology to provide guidance in giving an official grant to erecting the temple. Meanwhile, the Capital Development Authority had informed the IHC that building work had as the temple’s layout had yet to be approved by the relevant authorities.

For now, the Islamabad Hindu Panchayat has been forced to temporarily suspend the construction of the boundary wall for the temple after a young Muslim man had recorded himself destroying and desecrating the site.

Prisoners Allowed to Meet Families

After four months since the pandemic crisis-hit Pakistan, inmates detained in Punjab’s jails will now be finally allowed to meet their families per revised official guidelines. Under the new SOPs, only one member of the family will be allowed to visit. Temperatures for visitors as well as prisoners will be taken before allowing entry, and a distance of at least six-feet must be observed between the two parties.