PAKISTAN. PRISON OFFICIALS RAISE MONEY FOR DEATH ROW INMATES
July 25, 2007: the superintendent of a prison in the Pakistani port city of Karachi raises money to save the lives of his inmates. Nusrat Hussain Mangan of the Karachi Central Prison is adamantly against the death penalty.
There are 107 people on death row at his prison. The family of Mohammad Ishan, 34, condemned for murder, cannot afford the âblood moneyâ needed to save him from execution (1,200,000 rupees, or about $20,000). âEven if he's a criminal, he's a human being first. He deserves another chance and we can help save his life by contributing.â
Pakistan routinely carries out executions by hanging and according to Amnesty International's 2007 report nearly a third of the world's 24,000 death row prisoners are in Pakistan. âNothing comes out of killing another person,â Mangan said. He and his team recently succeeded in arranging the blood money for three other inmates, all of whom were sentenced to death for separate road accidents in which three people died.
"Not one was a 'criminal' as is usually pointed out. They were poor, so their families could not arrange for the money and their employers refused to bail them out. But the amount was manageable and we could find people to donate." (Sources: Inter Press Service, 26/07/2007)