January 23rd, 2022 

By Shaukat Korai 


The story of Syed Nauman Shah, an inmate of the Karachi central jail, being awarded a Million Rupee scholarship by the Institute of Charter Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) recently went viral on social media. And while the young man is rightly being portrayed as a beacon of success his life behind bars is far from ideal. As he has achieved so much yet his biggest dream, that of freedom remains unfulfilled. VoicePk.net reporters went to Karachi Central Jail to meet the man behind the hero.

Nauman Shah first stepped inside Karachi’s central jail in 2011 after being convicted of murder by an additional sessions judge. “The man I am accused of killing is named Sadeeq. His lawyers have claimed in court that I went to see him along with a brother of mine. A scuffle ensued following which I shot and killed him. Interestingly, the same judge who convicted me of this murder acquitted me on the charge of owning the murder weapon,” recalls Nauman.

In 2017 Nauman through his lawyer, Salahuddin Gandapur, challenged the session courts judgment in the Sindh High Court (SHC), but to no avail. “For the past 5 years, I have not even met my lawyer. I want to request him to pay attention to my case and get me out of here somehow,” says Nauman.

Nauman asserts that most of his educational achievements are not because but despite of Pakistan’s prison system. “No jail in Pakistan including my own has regular schools. Those of us who manage to get an education do so either on our own or through small-scale programs run by NGOs in conjunction with jail administrations. I request the government to make schools in all jails of Pakistan because the best way of reforming prisoners is by giving them a pen,” expressed Nauman.


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