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February 15, 2018

Public hanging: Islamic punishment means to stop crime, says CII

Top Story

February 15, 2018


ISLAMABAD: The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) on Wednesday officially conveyed to the Senate that the government and the court can go for public hanging of a convict without amending any law.

The CII added that Islamic punishments are meant to create deterrence against the crime in the society. In its response to the Senate’s recent reference on the question of public hanging, the CII on Wednesday formally replied to the Upper House. One-page reply of the CII, which had deliberated upon the issue last week, based its recommendations on the teachings of Islam.

The CII said that in Islamic Sharia, the purpose of punishment is to set example and create deterrence against crime. The Council’s reply said that in the case of Had-e-Zina (punishment for fornication), the Holy Quran explains that a group of people- Taifa- should be present to witness the execution of the punishment.

The Council added that the word Taifa is defined by the Islamic jurisprudence as a group of people whose number can vary from three to forty.

The CII said that in the case of dacoits, the Islamic Sharia envisages the punishment of hanging which usually is given in public. Regarding other punishments in Islam, the CII response added, it is said that the culprit should be made example for the society.

Referring to interpretation of Islamic scholars and jurisprudence, the CII explained that today in the presence of media the purpose of creating deterrence and making the culprit example, can even be achieved through media publicity of the execution of the punishment.

Regarding the Senate’s question about amending Section 364-A of the CrPC to include the words “Public hanging”, the CII said that no such amendment to the law is required as the purpose could be achieved under the prevalent law. The CII while referring to Rule 364 of the Prison Rules 1978 and Section 10 of Special Court for Speedy Trial Act 1992 concluded that in the presence of these laws and rules, the court and the government can go for public hanging of a convict.

The CII response further said that the present judicial system requires reformation for speedy justice not only to the satisfaction of the affected family but also to ensure the impression of certainty of punishment in the society. In the case of heinous crimes, the CII said that the culprits should be punished by the courts without waste of time.

Of late, the Senate Secretariat had referred to the Council a proposed amendment to CrPC to allow public hanging. Senate Committee on Interior under the chairmanship of Senator A Rehman Malik had recommended the amendment to publicly hang the convicts like the one involved in Kasur incidents.

The CII’s position on public hanging, does not go in line with what some politicians and even the Chief Justice of Pakistan have recently said. Initially Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif had said that he wanted to hang in public the murdered and rapists of young girls in Kasur to an example of him but the law did not allow him to do so. The CM said that he would get the law amended to pave the way for public hanging.

The Chief Justice of Pakistan during the hearing of suo moto case of Zainab murder was reported by the media to have told the father of the murdered child that he too wanted to publicly hang the culprit but it was not permissible by the law of the land.