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Sherry challenges proposed public executions

Sherry challenges proposed public executions


ISLAMABAD, FEB 19: Senator Sherry Rehman, Vice President of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), on Monday strongly opposed the proposal by Jamat-e-Islami’s Senator Mushtaq Ahmed to introduce public executions for rapists through amendments to the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and Criminal Procedure Code, calling it a counter effective measure in deterring sexual crimes and urged improved prosecutions and investigations to address the matter.

Speaking during a session of the Senate, she said: “The Peoples Party has always had a principled stance against the death penalty, whether public or private. While the PPP staunchly condemns rape as a heinous and grave crime, calling for the death penalty or public executions, as seen in various countries, have not proven to be effective in deterring sexual crimes. We must prioritize enhancing prosecutions and investigations rather than resorting to barbarism and violence within society.”

She added that there have been historical attempts at public executions during Ziaul Haq’s era which failed to reduce crime.

“If public hanging is advocated for one crime, it will be demanded for other offenses as well. The PPP focuses on the importance of addressing the prevailing anger towards violence and sexual crimes through comprehensive measures, including improved funding for the police, enhanced criminal investigations, and better training for officers handling rape cases.”

Further stressing the PPP’s commitment to human rights principles, Senator Rehman advocated for comprehensive solutions and the reallocation of resources to better support survivors.

“We reject the notion that public hangings serve as an effective solution and call for careful consideration of crimes, fair trials, and increased conviction rates as more practical deterrents,” she said, adding that Pakistan already has life-sentence punishment for rape.

“There is a need for a nuanced and well-thought-out approach to address crimes against women, focusing on comprehensive legal reforms and cultural changes rather than resorting to public executions. In contemporary 21st-century society, we cannot revert to medieval practices, as public executions to eliminate crimes; instead, they will have other detrimental effects on society.”

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