HRCP, rights activists demand release of missing persons

Ongoing enforced disappearances were living proof of failures of democratic, constitutional institutions, say speakers


Our Correspondent September 01, 2021
PHOTO: RIAZ AHMED/EXPRESS

KARACHI:

In commemoration of the International Day for Victims of Enforced Disappearances, observed worldwide on August 30, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) along with other organisations working for missing persons, organised a peaceful rally from Gora Qabristan to the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday.

The rally was headed by Asad Iqbal Butt, Co-chairperson HRCP and was attended in large numbers by families of victims, social and political workers, and representatives of trade unions.

Speakers of the rally, addressing the attendees, said that the ongoing enforced disappearances of citizens were living proof of the failures of democratic and constitutional institutions. Despite the existence of parliaments and proper judicial channels in the country, social and political workers are not given a chance to prove their innocence and are disappeared for years by organizations that are never held accountable for their unconstitutional acts. At this time, thousands of people remain missing, their loved ones having exhausted all resources are left helpless and in unimaginable agony.

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The speakers asserted that in a nation where the right to dissent is not respected and necessary democratic debate is brutally suppressed, development and prosperity will never occur. They maintained that if an individual was suspected of unconstitutional or criminal acts they reserved the right to fair trial.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 1st, 2021.

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