July 28, 2011

Raped Mukhtar Mai & murdered Saleem Shahzad

By Habib R. Sulemani

IT'S very simple why a person can’t get justice in Pakistan especially in those cases where the almighty military establishment has an interest or is directly/indirectly involved.

Mukhtar Mai – a woman who was reportedly gang raped on the orders of a tribal court in a southern Punjab village – couldn’t get justice from the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Why? Because the collected evidence was not sufficient to punish all of the accused except one sentenced to life imprisonment.

When the poor people of Pakistan cried along with Ms. Mai for their helplessness after the apex court’s extraordinary decision, the abashed Chief Justice of Pakistan came out and said: “Deteriorating investigation standards result in courts releasing individuals, for which the judiciary is later held responsible.” [The Express Tribune: April 24, 2011]

The argument of the Chief Justice could be true technically. Yes a court or judge gives decision on the basis of evidence. If an investigation is engineered or restricted, then a court of law or an investigative judicial commission can’t do what is generally expected.

As the military establishment – from the very beginning when dictator General Musharraf was still in power – had made Ms. Mai’s case an issue of its so-called huge ego. This is what generals often do in similar cases according to their Kakulian sense of honor!    

Instead of providing justice, we know how a traumatized Ms. Mai was further tortured and harassed by the sadist military regime. The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) tried to explain the gang rape incident like Dr. Joseph Goebbels of the Nazi German. A shameless character assassination campaign was started against the illiterate and poor rape victim in the vernacular media. The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI) used their typical tyrant ways to keep Ms. Mai hidden from the global media. But, as usual, they failed again!

At one stage, sources say, the generals had even considered to kill Ms. Mai in a systematic way so that there is no hue and cry anymore. But when the brave lady publicly said that she feared the government would kill her, then the world warned the regime. Thus the sheepish generals refrained from committing yet another crime against humanity.

When the final decision in Ms. Mai's case came after five long years, I thought: it was the least for the secret agencies to turn a gang rape into a rape case on the basis of their engineered investigation in this engineered country of world-class engineers!

Saleem Shahzad.—Images via Google
Here is a question: is it investigative journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad’s turn now? Mr. Shahzad was allegedly kidnapped and killed by the ISI in an effort to stop daring journalists from writing about the Pakistani military’s relations with global terrorists – a taboo subjects in the country.

First the ISI denied its involvement in the murder of the journalist. Then its writers' brigade started the typical elusive campaign in the media. When people were demanding registration of a murder case against Army Chief General Kayani and ISI boss General Pasha, the yes-sir-writers were very humbly requesting the ISI chief: Sir, if you get any vital clue to the identity of the culprits in the ISI, then, please, make sure that Saleem Shahzad’s family gets justice!  

Only stooges can behave like this.

Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) president Pervaiz Shaukat has reportedly demanded financial assistance for Mr. Shahzad's family while the slain journalist's wife has rejected it and sought justice. What this story indicates? Besides the ISI writers' brigade, is there any daring journalist to appear before the Justice Saqib Nisar-led Investigative Judicial Commission? Wouldn't such people be terrorized? 

The dilemma of  Justice Javed Iqbal is still fresh in minds of the people! The Supreme Court judge, who earlier this year while hearing a case against the ISI had announced that 2011 would be recovery of the missing persons’ year, the very next day his elderly parents were found dead in Lahore.

It's a nice day in Rawalpindi today, and I'm reading my poem: Don’t expect any impartial inquiry...

1 comment:

  1. "Saleem Shahzad was a double agent working for the ISI and CIA..."