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CJ takes suo motu notice of Kohistan jirga controversy

Written By Ali Awan on Monday, 4 June 2012 | 09:14


ISLAMABAD: Taking suo motu notice of media reports of a Kohistan Jirga that ‘condemned’ to death four girls for defying strict tribal customs, Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on Monday summoned Chief Secretary Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, District Police Officer Kohistan and Deputy Inspector General Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on June 6.
Media reports of the alleged killing of four girls and a fifth for being ‘an accomplice’ were presented before the chief justice today by the registrar of the Supreme Court.
According to an exclusive report by The Express Tribune, the jirga had declared four women and two men ‘Ghul’ (fornicators) after they were allegedly caught on videotape singing and dancing together at a wedding party in Bando Baidar village of Peech Bela union council.
The video caused a furore in the community, which felt the video had stained the honour of the tribeswomen. According to sources, elders of the Azad Khel tribe had summoned a jirga at the Seertaiy village, which sentenced the four women and the two men to death.
The chief justice ordered Attorney General Irfan Qadir to find out if the news reports about the incident were factual or not.
He further said that if the reports were bogus and such an incident never occurred, then the girls be presented before the court the same day.
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain also said that the reports were “wrong and baseless”.
The chief justice said, “This incident is a gross violation of fundamental human rights.” He added that the Supreme Court has already given directions against the jirga system.
The police had registered an FIR against two brothers, Bin Yasir and Gul Nazar, for allegedly making the film and uploading it on a video sharing site.
Earlier on Sunday, Yasir and Nazar’s elder brother, Muhammad Afzal said the women were called back from their in-laws and locked in a room.
He added that their family members subjected the women to severe torture – threw hot water on them, beat them, and kept them in isolation for two months.
Afzal also said that the jirga sent over 30 men to kill one of his brothers.

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