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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                                    

Islamic Republic of Pakistan

Civilians face the threat of extralegal violence by state actors, including enforced disappearances. The number of pending cases of people registered as missing since 2011 by the official Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances rose to 6,506 during 2019, of which 4,365 cases had reportedly been resolved by the end of the year.

  [Freedom House Country Report, 2020]

Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Pakistan

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Pakistan.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of Torture by Authorities are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the moral justification for inflicting pain or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in order to obtain critical information that may save countless lives, or to elicit a confession for a criminal act, or to punish someone to teach him a lesson outside of the courtroom.  Perhaps your paper might focus on some of the methods of torture, like fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, suffocation, or immersion in freezing water.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the people acting in an official capacity who perpetrate such cruelty.  There is a lot to the subject of Torture by Authorities.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.

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2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Pakistan

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 2 August 2021]


Kidnappings and forced disappearances of persons took place in nearly all areas of the country. Some officials from intelligence agencies, police, and other security forces reportedly held prisoners incommunicado and refused to disclose their location. The independent nongovernmental organization (NGO) Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) estimated at least 2,100 political dissenters and rights activists were missing in the country, although the actual number may be higher.


Human rights organizations claimed that torture was perpetrated by police, military, and intelligence agency members, that they operated with impunity, and that the government lacked serious efforts to curb the abuse.

On June 24, a video of three police officers abusing and stripping a man naked at a police station in Peshawar went viral on social media. In January the inspector general of Sindh, Kaleem Imam, claimed some officers of the Counterterrorism Department (CTD) were involved in extortion and wrongful confinement. He claimed some senior CTD officials had encouraged these officers, rather than punishing them, for such abuses.

Media and civil society organizations reported cases of individuals dying in police custody allegedly due to torture. On July 9, the body of a prisoner, Peeral Khaskheli, was found in a police lock-up in Sanghar, Sindh. His family claimed police were responsible for the death, while police claimed the deceased committed suicide.

Freedom House Country Report

2020 Edition

[accessed 18 May 2020]


Civilians face the threat of extralegal violence by state actors, including enforced disappearances. The number of pending cases of people registered as missing since 2011 by the official Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances rose to 6,506 during 2019, of which 4,365 cases had reportedly been resolved by the end of the year. However, there was no sign of the commission’s deliberations leading to any effective sanctions against the agencies undertaking the disappearances—although the commission tracks cases, it has refrained from attributing responsibility. Most victims were from KPK, the former FATA, or Baluchistan, and typically were held incommunicado by security and intelligence agencies on suspicion of antistate agitation, terrorism, rebellion, or espionage.

Police torture of professor Arbab sparks condemnation

Yousaf Ali, The News, Peshawar, 12 April 2020

[accessed 12 April 2020]

According to Dr Arbab Khan Afridi, he was alone in a small market opposite the University of Peshawar to buy some vegetables the other day when he received a severe blow with baton on his back. “When I looked back, I saw a policeman beating me harshly. After four to five blows with quick succession, I fell down and became unconscious,”

Instead of rushing him to the hospital, the police took him to the Town Police Station where they insisted on registering a case against him, he said. “Nobody was listening to me. I was not aware of any violation committed by me and insisted them to show me the reason for insulting and torturing me. My body was aching and I felt severe pain in my arm which was later found to have been fractured,” Arbab Khan Afridi said.

Inhumane treatment alleged: Man dies of ‘police torture’ in Faisalabad

Kashif Farid, The Express Tribune, Faisalabad, 22 December 2018

[accessed 23 December 2018]

According to details, Falak Sher, a resident of Salay Wala Road, was taken into custody by Thikriwala police over suspicion of his involvement in a robbery case. However, during the course of interrogation the police officials allegedly tortured him.

Later, the police released the victim after allegedly taking Rs50,000 bribe from his family. When Falak reached home, his condition deteriorated and he was immediately shifted to a private hospital for treatment. But after struggling for his life for six days, he breathed his last.

‘We will take action against police officials who commit torture’: NCHR

Daily Times, Faisalabad, 29 May 2018

[accessed 29 May 2018]

The National Commission on Human Rights conducted its Preliminary Investigation into nearly 1,500 cases of torture reported by Justice Project Pakistan in just one district of Faisalabad.

The report states that out of these 143 victims were suspended, 464 were forced to witness others being tortured, 15 were subjected to sleep deprivation, 11 were exposed to extreme heat or cold and 114 were sexually abused. The report also finds that 61 percent of women were sexually abused and 81 percent were subjected to culturally inappropriate practices.

Uproar in Pakistan over 'torture and sexual abuse' of Christian youths

Shamil Shams & Sattar Khan, Deutsche Welle, Islamabad, 28 February 2018

[accessed 24 March 2018]

[accessed 24 March 2018]

On Friday, Sajid Masih, a 24-year-old blasphemy suspect, leapt from the fourth floor of the Federal Investigation Agency's (FIA) Punjab headquarters in Lahore and severely injured himself. In a video statement, Sajid alleged that he jumped because the FIA officials tortured him and ordered him to "sexually assault" Patras Masih, his cousin and the main accused in an online blasphemy case.

"They asked me to abuse myself, but I refused to do so. Later, they asked me to sexually assault my cousin, but I remained silent and jumped from the building," he said.

Kurram woman alleges son’s death by police torture

DAWN News, Parachinar, 25 November 2017

[accessed 25 November 2017]

The woman said her son was transferred from Parachinar to central jail Bannu, adding her family was informed that Afzal had died in custody and that they should arrange ambulance to shift the body to Parachinar.

She said her son bore several marks of violence, adding the body was shifted to hospital where doctors also confirmed violence on it. The mother said her son’s neck and ribs were broken due to severe torture, and urged Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governor to order inquiry into the mysterious death of her son and bring culprits to justice.

Post-mortem report: MQM worker’s body bore torture marks

Farah Jamil, Aaj News, 6 May 2016 -- Source: Business Recorder

[accessed 17 August 2016]

The post-mortem report of MQM worker Aftab Ahmed, who died in Rangers’ custody, said several torture marks were visible on his body.

The examination report, a copy of which is available with Business Recorder, stated that the body was full of bruises and abrasions; reddish black marks were present at various parts including chest, thighs, skull and buttocks. Skin had received multiple abrasions. A nail of the left toe was partially torn off.

Aftab Ahmad was arrested by Rangers at his residence in Federal B. Area on May 1 for his alleged involvement in several criminal cases. He was later produced before an Anti-Terrorism Count (ATC) which handed over him to Rangers on a 90-day detention.

Police use of brutal torture methods continues unabated

Ashraf Javed, The Nation, Lahore, 9  May 2016

[accessed 10 August 2016]

“They were paraded naked, thrashed, punched, and kicked on their private parts. Their hands and feet were tied to a charpoy and they were tortured brutally in upside down position. The policemen also threw salt and pepper on the victim’s injuries to force them to confess to the robberies (whether they had committed or not)”.

The police during interrogation uses multiple methods of torture to extort cash and information from crime suspects. Although the police are asked to use scientific methods of investigations yet the suspects are tortured by police to force them to confess the crimes.

Torture in Pakistan

International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (irct)

Developed in collaboration with the Struggle for Change (SACH), September 2014

[accessed 23 June 2015]

Torture in Pakistan is increasingly common throughout the country and takes different forms in different circumstances. Reasons for the infliction of torture include to obtain a confession, information, or as punishment with the purpose of causing mental and physical harm. The fight against torture fails victims in the areas of prevention, rehabilitation and in access to justice.

Centre takes a U-turn, may approach ICJ over Captain Saurabh Kalia torture case

Press Trust of India, New Delhi, 2 June 2015

[accessed 18 June 2015]

A postmortem report by Army doctors indicated signs of "burns inflicted by cigarettes, ear drums pierced by hot rods, broken bones and teeth, removing of eyes before puncturing them, chopped limbs and private organs".

Youth died from severe police torture, autopsy reveals

Lahore, 24 April 2015

[accessed 10 May 2015]

The autopsy report of 24-year-old Shahzad, a shopkeeper in Photo Market on Nisbat Road, revealed that the youth died of severe torture in police custody, rescuers and medical sources said on Thursday.

Hundreds of people mostly shopkeepers took to the streets and staged demonstration against the police brutality on Thursday. The protesters blocked the Chah Miran Road by putting the body on the road, creating worst traffic mess in the busy locality for more than an hour.

Hospital sources said Shahzad had sustained injuries and severe bruising in the upper right back area and severe bruises of sharp circular shape in the right chest area. There was also evidence of severe torture on the muscle of the upper left shoulder, parallel to the spine in the lower neck area, and evidence of severe torture under the skin and inside the muscle of the right side of the chest.

Pakistan to execute juvenile who confessed under torture, says family

Ranee Mohamed, News 1st DIGITAL, 15 March 2015

[accessed 30 March 2015]

An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan has re-ordered the execution of a man convicted for a crime his family and lawyers say was committed when he was a juvenile.   They also say he was tortured into a confession.

Manzoor, Hussain’s brother, met him in 2010 when he found out the details of the way he was allegedly tortured.   “His nails had been removed and his thumb on his right hand was twisted because of being broken.   “He had cigarette stub marks all over his arm.” Manzoor told CNN.

Murder he wrote: Medico-legal officer blows the whistle on police encounters

Noman Ahmed, The Express Tribune, Karachi, 22 February 2015

[accessed 30 March 2015]

A whistleblower’s assertions about the veracity of infamous ‘police encounters’ in the city caused ripples within the police department on Sunday. So intimidated were the police by the evidence he had against their ‘illegal tactics’ that they allegedly forced him to erase all the findings of police encounter casualties from his laptop computer.

The revelations were made by Dr Ali in a press conference following his release from the kidnapping and ‘third-degree’ torture, allegedly carried out by police personnel in civilian clothes. “I was kidnapped and subjected to inhumane torture for not agreeing to tamper with the post-mortem report of a police-encounter casualty,” said Dr Ali.

Karachi: Alleged target killer dies of police torture

Dunya News, Karachi, 10 January,2015

[accessed 24 March 2015]

An alleged target killer Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) worker Faraz alias on Saturday has died in the police custody due to torture in Khokhrapar Police Station.

Human Rights Watch World Report 2015 - Events of 2014

Human Rights Watch, 29 January 2015 or

[accessed 18 March 2015]


COUNTERTERRORISM AND LAW ENFORCEMENT ABUSES - Accountability of law enforcement agencies showed no signs of improving in 2014. In June, one of the most egregious incidents of excessive use of force against political protesters occurred in Model Town, a Lahore suburb. Police fired without warning on supporters of the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT), an opposition political party, whose workers had tried to stop police demolition of security barriers erected in front of PAT headquarters. Authorities confirmed the deaths of at least eight PAT members. Another 80 PAT members were injured.

In July, the government enacted new repressive counterterrorism legislation. The Protection of Pakistan Act (PPA) is an extremely broad and ambiguously worded document that grants the security forces broad powers to implement preventive detention and carry out arrests without warrants. Such provisions can easily provide legal cover for abuses by law enforcement agencies and open the door for the violation of fundamental rights to freedom of speech, privacy, peaceful assembly, and a fair trial.

Heavy-handedness: Police accused of illegal detention and torture

The Express Tribune, 31 August 2014

[accessed 16 September 2014]

When Abid Khan heard the police were looking for his son, he decided to be a responsible citizen and turn Abrar in. Moments later, Abrar would allegedly be stripped naked and hung upside down as officers thrashed him with a whip and bamboo sticks.

The father said he took Abrar to Mirpur police station when he heard the law enforcers were looking for him. That is when, according to Abid, things turned ugly and the police illegally detained his son to forcefully extract a confession. Abrar was reportedly kept at the police station illegally for four days.

“They beat him with a whip, hung him upside down naked and also intermittently hit his private parts with bamboo sticks,” he said. He told the DIG that when his elder son Mohsin Khan took lunch for Abrar the next day, the police also beat him and used abusive language.

New Pakistan law will likely worsen torture by police

Kristine Beckerle, Deborah Francois and Babur Khwaja, , The Baltimore Sun, 28 August 2014,0,7851768.story

[accessed 16 September 2014]

Police in Faisalabad, Pakistan's third largest city, tortured more than 1,400 people during a six-year period, according to a report researched and written by the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic at Yale Law School, for Justice Project Pakistan (JPP), a non-governmental organization based in Lahore, Pakistan.

The report, which we authored, documents how law enforcement uses its power to inflict pain largely with impunity. Police beat detainees, hang them by their arms or feet for hours on end, force them to witness the torture of others, and strip them naked and parade them in public.

Taxila police torture cell unearthed

Khalid Mehmood, The Nation, Wah Cantt, 13 August 2014

[accessed 14 August 2014]

A man disclosed to the media that the Taxila Police were running a private torture cell at the house of a local political activist near Nawababad - an area in the constituency of Federal Interior Minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan.

Telling his terrible tale at a lawyer’s chamber, Awal Khan alleged that the police took him and his friend Hameed Khan to the cell on July 9 for extorting Rs5,00,000. “We were also kept at private torture cells in Gujranwala and Lahore, followed by detention at an under-construction house of a police inspector in Rawalpindi. We were tortured, given electric shocks and our nails were pulled out,” he said.

Layyah torture victim moves court against cops

Owais Jafri, The Express Tribune, Layyah, 7 June 2014

[accessed 8 June 2014]

The 55-year-old said there was a land dispute between Ashar and MPA Qaiser Magsi.   He said Magsi had occupied the land for many years before Ashar took him to court and won the case.   He said he had been warned against working on Ashar’s land several times. He said on April 27, he, his mother, wife and children, were dragged out of their home by ASI Muhammad Nawaz and Constable Muhammad Zafar.   He said when they resisted, they were beaten by the officials.

He said Chobara SHO Yousuf Lashari arrived later and the SHO told the ASI to beat him.   He said at the time, the SHO got a call on his mobile phone and he said he had complied with “the orders” and would soon visit “the farmhouse.”   He said he said he was badly beaten and forced to kiss the feet of the ASI several times.   He said at some point he fainted and woke in Chobara police station.

He said the police demanded Rs50,000 for his release but let him go when he paid Rs35,000.

Police torture on political workers unacceptable

Samaa, Islamabad, February 11, 2014

[accessed 16 February 2014]

[accessed 1 August 2017]

Former Punjab governor Latif Khosa, MQM leader Waseem Akhtar and senior journalist Muhammad Malick agreed that the brutal police treatment meted out to the MQM’s workers was unacceptable and highly deplorable.   Appearing in SAMAA’s current affairs program, “Nadeem Malik Live” today, Waseem Akhtar said situation is getting worse day by day in Karachi as the city was turned into a police state.

Our innocent workers are being picked and subjected to inhuman torture at police stations,” he said, adding that 45 MQM’s activists were still missing.

Police overnight torture held MQM worker, dump him in hospital

Geo TV News, Karachi, 9 February 2014

[accessed 11 Feb 2014]

The bridegroom, an MQM worker Fahad held last night after third degree police torture has been admitted into a private hospital in critical condition on Sunday morning here, Geo News reported.

Sources said that Fahad was in the overnight custody of East Zone police and his body bore severe torture marks.

Custodial death: 11 policemen charged with torture, killing

Owais Jafri, The Express Tribune, Multan, 17 December 2013

[accessed 17 Dec 2013]

The Vehari district police officer (DPO) on Monday dismissed 11 police officials from service for their involvement in the custodial torture of a murder suspect that resulted in his death.

He said a police investigation had revealed that Mehmood was taken to the house of a landlord, Bholi Gujjar, by the policemen where he was tortured. He was later taken to district headquarters hospital in Vehari where he succumbed to his injuries.

The DPO said the autopsy report had revealed that the man died from severe torture. It said he had been given electric shocks and burnt. Holes had also been drilled into his body.

Government gives up on tortured Kargil hero: Delhi gets cold feet on taking Islamabad to International Court of Justice

Harish V Nair, Mail Online India, 19 November 2013

[accessed 21 Nov 2013]

Capt. Kalia, of the 4 Jat Regiment, was the first Army officer to report large-scale incursions by the Pakistan Army in the Kargil region in 1999. He was captured by Pakistani troops along with five soldiers on May 15. The bodies were handed over to India by the Pakistan Army on June 9. The bodies had been burnt with cigarettes, the ear-drums pierced with hot rods, eyes punctured and removed, most teeth and bones broken, and limbs and genitals cut or chopped off. The injuries were found to pre-date death.

Police custody: Man tortured to death during interrogation

Owais Jafri, Express Tribune, Multan, 18 August 2013

[accessed 17 Aug 2013]

An autopsy report from Nishtar Hospital on Friday confirmed that a man who had been taken into police custody for interrogation on Wednesday was tortured to death.   The autopsy report said there were signs of torture all over the man’s body, including his genitals.

Javaid Azhar, 22, had been taken into custody for interrogation regarding the kidnapping and murder of Tariq Hassan, a 7-year old child, resident of Tariq Abad.   Police took Azhar into custody on Wednesday believing apparently that he could lead them to the kidnappers.   On Thursday, they handed Javaid Azhar’s body over to his family saying that he had had a cardiac arrest.   Azhar’s family demanded that the policemen responsible for Azhar’s death be hanged.

LHC takes notice of police torture

The News International, Lahore, 23 June 2013

[accessed 24 June 2013]

[accessed 29 August 2016]

The Lahore High Court on Saturday took notice of torturing a man to death by police in Faisalabad and directed the District & Sessions Judge concerned to probe the matter and submit a detailed report.

Ali Raza Abad said police raided a gambling den in Kaleem Shaheed Colony and tortured a man, Ghulam Rasool, to death. After the incident, the family of Ghulam Rasool staged a protest in Chohar Majra Chowk placing his body on the road and demanding registration of case against ASI Waqas for killing Ghulam Rasool.

Brutal torture by SHO leaves man dead

Staff Report, Daily Times, Lahore, 8 June 2013

[accessed 25 March 2014]

[accessed 1 August 2017]

A 35-year-old man was tortured to death by SHO Shahdra police station and his four subordinates in their private torture cell here on Friday.

The deceased was identified as Siraj Din, hailing from Faisalabad. Police investigator said that Shahdra police had arrested the victim during last few days due to his involvement in different crimes. He further said that victim was arrested and shifted to some personal place of SHO Shahdra and SI Muhammad Afzal Virk with the help of four constables.

He said they had been torturing him and he felt unconscious in the meantime. Police rushed him to Mayo hospital where doctors pronounced him dead. The investigator said on the complaint of SI Muhammad Varyam they registered a case against their SHO and four constables under section 302 of PPC for torturing to death an accused. Police have arrested SHO and four constables and shifted the body to the mortuary for autopsy.

Police torture teenager, release him after taking bribe

Daily Times, Karachi, 5 June 2013

[accessed 25 March 2014]

Police, after arresting a teenage seminary student in Gulberg, badly tortured him before handing him back to the family for a bribe of Rs 10,000. According to the family, three policemen, Mohammad Fateh, Mazhar Ali and Ali Ashar, arrested victim Mohammad Ali. When Ali’s family reached the police station, policemen refused to hand over the teenager. Police later handed over the boy in an unconscious state after taking a bribe of Rs 10,000. The family staged a protest outside the Governor House against the policemen. Following the protest, Governor Sindh took notice of the incident and ordered to register the case and arrest the policemen. DSP Altaf Hussain later informed that three policemen were suspended for torturing the student. Hussain said that FIR was registered, and one accused, Fateh, has been arrested. He said that the remaining two policemen managed to escape, adding that the investigation was underway.

MQM worker was tortured to death: Doctors

Faraz Khan, The Express Tribune, Karachi, 29 May 2013

[accessed 29 May 2013]

Before the cause of death of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s activist, Ajmal Baig, could have been dragged on amid accusations and lack of evidence, the postmortem report issued on Tuesday confirmed that Baig died due to the injuries he suffered from being tortured.

The victim’s postmortem was carried out at the Karachi Civil Hospital by Dr Farhat Mirza and Dr Qarar Abbasi under the presence of the judicial magistrate.

“When the police brought him (Baig) into the hospital on May 21, he had the same torture marks on his body,” the medico-legal officer, Dr Qarar Abbasi, told The Express Tribune. “I had told the policemen that Baig needed proper treatment but despite his injures, he was sent to jail.”

According to the medical report, the limbs of the deceased were swollen as parts of his body were severely tortured, including legs, hands, back and buttocks. According to the doctors, the deceased was also given electric shocks and could have survived if he had been provided proper treatment.

“Obviously, his internal organs were also damaged due to the extreme torture and lack of treatment. We have sent samples to the laboratory to verify the damages to the internal parts of his body.”

Stories of torture on Indians in Pakistani jails don’t seem to end! Now, Lal Singh recalls the horror

Bhaskar News, 10 May 2013

[accessed 10 May 2013]

Singh said that he crossed over the Pakistan border by mistake and the Pakistan police arrested him on charges of being a spy. He said that the Pakistan police interrogated him a number of times during his tenure in the jail and used to beat him mercilessly. Singh said that he tried to convince them that he was just being a victim of mistaken identity but they won’t listen and he was sentenced to 2 years of imprisonment.

Human Rights in Pakistan

Human Rights Watch

[accessed 10 February 2013]

The judicial ouster of Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, attacks on civilians by militant groups, growing electricity shortages, and rising food and fuel prices all contributed to turbulence in Pakistan. Religious minorities – such as the Shia-Muslim Hazara community – were killed in large numbers with no one held to account. The military dominated politics in Pakistan and operated above the law. A number of terrorism suspects and the military’s opponents were forcibly disappeared. The police committed widespread abuses, including torturing criminal suspects and committing extrajudicial killings, while law enforcement broke down in the face of attacks by armed militant groups. Abuses by state security forces and militant groups worsened in mineral-rich Balochistan.


From an old article -- URL not available

Article was published sometime prior to 2015


Security forces continued to act with impunity and were accused of widespread human rights violations, including arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, torture, deaths in custody and extrajudicial executions targeting political activists, journalists, and suspected members of armed groups. In the northwest tribal areas, the armed forces exploited new and old security laws to provide cover for these violations beyond the reach of the courts.


Hundreds of unlawful killings, including extrajudicial executions and deaths in custody, were widely reported. They were most common in the northwest tribal areas, and Balochistan and Sindh provinces.

On several occasions during the year, the Peshawar High Court ordered investigations into the more than 100 bodies found dumped across Peshawar, capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Muzaffar Bhutto, leader of an ethnic Sindhi political party, was found dead on 22 May in Bukhari village near Hyderabad, Sindh, after he was abducted by men in plain clothes accompanied by police 15 months earlier. His body reportedly bore torture marks and bullet wounds but no one was brought to justice for his abduction or killing.


The Supreme Court was granted unprecedented access to some victims of enforced disappearances, including seven surviving members of the “Adiala 11” in February, and several others from Balochistan throughout the year. The Chief Justice threatened to order the arrest of law enforcement personnel for failing to provide a legal basis for arrests and detentions in Balochistan, and the Peshawar High Court continued to pressure the authorities to provide details of all individuals held in security detention in the northwest tribal areas. However, reports of enforced disappearances continued across the country, especially in Balochistan province and the north-west tribal areas; no serving or retired security personnel were brought to justice for their alleged involvement in these or other violations. The UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances made its first ever visit to the country in September, but key officials refused to meet them, including the head of the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances, Chief Justices of the Supreme Court and most High Courts, and senior security and military representatives.

The body of Baloch Republican Party leader Sangat Sana was found dumped on the outskirts of Turbat, Balochistan, on 13 February. More than two years earlier, he was seen being taken by several men in plain clothes at a police roadblock at the Bolan Pass on the Quetta-Sindh highway.


Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 4   Civil Liberties: 5   Status: Partly Free

2009 Edition

[accessed 10 February 2013]

LONG URL   ç 2009 Country Reports begin on Page 21

[accessed 13 May 2020]

Police routinely engage in crime, excessive force, torture, and arbitrary detention; extort money from prisoners and their families; accept bribes to file or withdraw charges; rape female detainees; and commit extrajudicial killings. Prison conditions are extremely poor, with overcrowding a particular problem. Case backlogs mean that the majority of prisoners are awaiting trial. Government critics are particularly at risk of arbitrary arrest, torture, “disappearance,” or denial of basic due process rights. Progress on creating an official human rights commission empowered to investigate cases and redress grievances has been slow, and although a number of cases are investigated and some prosecutions do occur, impunity remains the norm. Feudal landlords, tribal groups, and some militant groups operate private jails where detainees are routinely maltreated.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 10 February 2013]

[accessed 4 July 2019]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law prohibits torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment; however, security forces tortured and abused persons. Under provisions of the Anti-Terrorist Act, coerced confessions are admissible in special courts, although police did not used this provision to obtain convictions.

Security force personnel continued to torture persons in custody throughout the country. Human rights organizations reported that methods included beating; burning with cigarettes, whipping the soles of the feet, prolonged isolation, electric shock, denial of food or sleep, hanging upside down, and forced spreading of the legs with bar fetters. Security force personnel reportedly raped women and children during interrogations. The nongovernmental organization (NGO) Lawyers for Human Rights and Legal Aid recorded 1,356 cases of torture during the year. Torture occasionally resulted in death or serious injury (see section 1.a.). In April Shabbir Hussain, Zafar Abass, and Muhammad Sadiq claimed that police detained and tortured them on false charges of theft. During their detention in Hafizabad, Punjab, police allegedly beat them in front of their accuser, forced them to drink their own urine and eat mud, and hung them upside down. The Lahore High Court ordered the police to register cases against the officer involved.

On June 23, police in Vehari severely beat and stitched together the lips of prisoner Mohammad Hussain after he argued with a police officer. At year's end authorities suspended seven policemen for their involvement.

The United Nation's implicated Pakistani peacekeepers assigned to the United Nations Mission in the Congo (MONUC) in the organization's sexual abuse scandal. The government took steps to investigate and punish those reportedly involved. In March Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported that in August 2004 domestic and foreign security forces secretly abducted and subsequently tortured two foreign nationals, brothers Zain Afzal and Kashan Afzal, to extract confessions of involvement in terrorist activities. HRW reported that authorities released the brothers on April 22 without charge.

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- Pakistan",, [accessed <date>]