20 February 2024 :

Pakistan’s Senate on February 19, 2024 rejected a bill proposing public execution for rape convicts, with lawmakers deeming it ineffective in deterring sexual crimes.
The upper house of parliament dismissed the amendment to the Pakistan Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure through the Criminal Laws (Amendment) Bill 2023 with a vote of 24 against and 14 in favor.
Introduced by Jamaat-e-Islami’s (JI) Senator Mushtaq Ahmed, the bill found support from Senators Mehr Taj Roghani, Kamran Murtaza, Maulana Faiz Muhammad, Hafiz Abdul Kareem, Kamal Ali Agha, Abdul Qadir, and others.
However, those opposing the bill called for improved prosecution and investigation to combat sexual crimes, stressing the need for a better prison environment to prevent such offenses in the future.
Defending his proposal, Mushtaq argued that public executions would deter brutality, though critics argued otherwise.
Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s (JUI-F) Faiz Muhammad supported Mushtaq’s stance, advocating for the public hanging of perpetrators of heinous crimes.
However, Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Senator Sherry Rehman strongly opposed the bill, citing its ineffectiveness in deterring sexual crimes and emphasizing the importance of enhancing prosecutions and investigations.
During the Senate session, Rehman stated, “The Peoples Party has always held a principled stance against the death penalty, whether public or private.” She emphasized that while the PPP condemns rape as a heinous crime, the implementation of the death penalty or public executions, as observed in other countries, has not proven effective in preventing sexual crimes. Rehman stressed the need to prioritize enhanced prosecutions and investigations instead of resorting to barbaric methods.
Referring to historical attempts at public executions during Ziaul Haq’s era, Rehman highlighted their failure in reducing crime. She warned against advocating for public hanging for one crime, as it may lead to demands for similar measures for other offenses. The PPP, she reiterated, emphasizes addressing societal anger towards violence and sexual crimes through comprehensive measures, including increased funding for the police, improved criminal investigations, and better training for officers handling rape cases.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Senator Sadia Abbasi also opposed the bill, expressing concerns that it would exacerbate societal violence. Abbasi cited historical incidents of public floggings in the country and the subsequent negative reactions both domestically and internationally.
Similarly, PML-N’s Senator Ishaq Dar supported the opposition to the bill, noting the existence of the death penalty in law. He deemed the bill “inappropriate” and stressed that criminals should not be subjected to public executions.


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