LARKANA: Tribal elders imposed heavy financial penalties on two groups on Sunday as they resolved a dispute that has claimed around 11 lives during the past 10 years.
Members of the Mian Khan Khakhrani group and the Zahoor Khani Khakhrani group had been involved in a bloody relationship over a land dispute that arose in 2003.
MNA Ghaus Bux Mahar and Sardar Himat Kumario, who both hail from Shikarpur, as well as elders from different tribes took part in a jirga in the Jungle Khan village on Sunday, and imposed the fines after listening to both groups for almost six hours.
The jirga imposed a fine of Rs4.65 million on the Zahoor group for killing seven people of the rival group. Its members were also told to pay Rs150,000 for each of the seven people of the other group who got injured during the last 10 years.
Similarly, the Mian Khan group was directed to pay the other group Rs2.5 million for the four people it allegedly killed over the years, and Rs150,000 for each of the two people it injured. Both groups are supposed to pay half the amount that they owe to the other on February 1.
The jirga also decided that the two Khakhrani groups will withdraw cases against each other.
In case one side attacks members of the other in the future, that side will pay the other Rs5 million, added the elders who took part in the jirga.
Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry had declared jirgas unconstitutional during the hearing of multiple petitions that had been filed against vani and swara customs through which jirgas and punchayats barter girls to settle disputes.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 7th, 2013.